AUTHORITY

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 JESUS’ AUTHORITY HAS BEEN GIVEN TO US …

Matthew 28:18–19 And Jesus came and spoke to them, saying, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go therefore…

When God created man, He gave man authority to have dominion over everything on earth. (Genesis 1:26) But when man sinned, he gave this authority to Satan. And when man’s authority was transferred to Satan, Satan brought in diseases, poverty, strife, bitterness, pain, loss and death. He messed up everything on earth for man.

“Pastor, why didn’t God just grab the devil by the neck and throw him out of the garden?” God did not do that because He is a judicial God. It was a man who gave away his authority to Satan. So it had to be a man who would legally take it back. And God has done this through a Man. His name is Jesus!

By His death on the cross, Jesus righteously restored all that man had lost. That is why, just before He went back to heaven, He said, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go therefore…” Those words tell us that He has transferred His authority to us. The same authority that He had over the storm, evil spirits, sicknesses, diseases and even death is now ours to use.

So when there are reports of a flu epidemic and of young children falling sick in the media, know that you have dominion over the epidemic. Declare, “By the authority given to me in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, this flu virus will not come near my children. I plead the blood of Jesus over them.”

If you have been told that your family has a history of heart disease, take dominion and declare, “By the authority given to me in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, I destroy every form, manifestation and hereditary cause of this disease. By His blood, my family has been redeemed from this and every other curse.”

My friend, the authority which has been restored to us is not just the authority on earth which man had before the fall, but Jesus’ unquestionable and complete authority in heaven and on earth!

Thought For The Day :
The same authority that Jesus had over the storm, evil spirits, sicknesses, diseases and even death is now ours to use.

ETERNAL GLORY

For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all – 2 Corinthians 4:17 NIV

Troubles and trials are only temporary! In fact, this verse tells us they are momentary. Compared with eternity, our troubles won’t last long at all! When you stand strong in faith during the difficult times, you are building faith in your life and also achieving eternal glory.

If you are in the middle of tough times today, look to God. The Bible says that He is the Author and Finisher of your faith. He is the one who writes faith on your heart and then develops it to completion on the inside of you. Your part is to open your heart and choose those words of faith and victory. Remember, your words set the course for your life. As you remind yourself that your troubles are only momentary and declare your trust and hope in God, you will see His hand moving in your life. It won’t be long until you’re past those momentary troubles and experiencing His eternal glory!

 BLESSED AT GOD’S COMMAND!

Then I will command My blessing on you in the sixth year, and it will bring forth produce enough for three years. – Leviticus 25:21

Let me show you something about God’s principle of rest today.

God told the Israelites to sow and reap their land for six years, but on the seventh year, they were to rest their land (Leviticus 25:1–5). You might ask, “What were the Israelites supposed to eat in the seventh year if they couldn’t do any sowing or reaping in that year?”

Well, God said, “…I will command My blessing on you in the sixth year, and it will bring forth produce enough for three years.” In other words, God would so bless their sowing in the sixth year that what they reaped would be enough to last them for three years! Isn’t God so practical?

My friend, when you observe God’s principle of rest, your needs will be more than met. When you cease striving and worrying, and simply rest in God’s goodness and promises made sure by the finished work of His Son, He will command His blessings on you. You don’t have to worry about losing out to your colleagues or competitors who depend on manipulation and their machinations to get what they want. You will have more than enough when you do it God’s way because He will command His blessings upon you!

DEATH HAS LOST ITS POWER

Matthew 27:52 “And the graves were opened; and many bodies of the saints which slept arose,”

This is an amazing event that only Matthew records. This earthquake apparently rolled the stones away from many of the graves in the vicinity of Jerusalem, and some of the saints buried there arose from the dead. Even at the death of Jesus, such power was released that death lost its grip on its captives.

It is uncertain whether these resurrected saints died again or were caught up to God. If they were resurrected at Christ’s death, then they would have had to die again, just as Lazarus or Jairus’ daughter or the widow’s son at Nain or anyone else that Jesus raised from the dead during His ministry. This is because Jesus was, “the firstfruits of them that slept” (Acts 26:23; 1 Cor. 15:20). Jesus was not the first person physically raised from the dead, but He was the first person begotten from the dead to never die again.

If these people were not actually resurrected until after Jesus’ resurrection, when Matthew states they came out of their graves, then they could have been resurrected with their glorified bodies to never die again.

At any rate, these saints went into Jerusalem after Jesus was resurrected and they appeared to many people. We can only guess what effect this must have had on the people.

The resurrection of Jesus puts Christianity in a class all by itself. Many people have come and gone professing some revelation from God or new way of approaching God. But only Jesus has conquered death. This makes Him unique and elevates Him above the level of any other man who has ever walked on the earth. The resurrection of Jesus is the ultimate proof of the accuracy of His doctrine.

 IF YOU CAN BELIEVE

…Jesus looked at them and said to them, “With men this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.” – Matthew 19:26

When a poor demon-possessed child was brought to Jesus, the father of the child, obviously desperate, said to Jesus, “…if You can do anything, have compassion on us and help us.” Jesus’ replied, “If you can believe, all things are possible to him who believes” (Mark 9:22–23).

Now, many of us have been taught that Jesus was saying that as long as you have the necessary faith, all things are possible for you. In other words, if you can produce the faith, you can have your miracle. But is this what Jesus meant?

If you study the Greek structure of this verse, what Jesus was actually saying was that all things are possible for Him who always believes. Jesus is the only Man who always believes, who always has perfect faith. And because He is Lord, all things are possible for Him!

My friend, simply hook your limited faith to the perfect faith of the Son of God. Just believe that He Himself has all the faith for your miracle. Even when you are faithless, believe that He remains faithful (2 Timothy 2:13). When you rest in His faith that NEVER fails, you’ll see His faithfulness bring your miracle to pass!

CHRIST IS ALIVE IN US ...

John 19:30 “When Jesus therefore had received the vinegar, he said, It is finished: and he bowed his head, and gave up the ghost.”

When Jesus cried, “It is finished,” He was not referring to the whole plan of salvation as being completed. He still had to descend into the lower parts of the earth and lead the captives out (Eph. 4:8-9), as well as come back from the dead and ascend to the Father to make intercession for us (Heb. 7:25).

Paul made it very clear in 1 Corinthians 15:14 and 17, that if Jesus did not rise from the dead, then our faith is vain and we are yet in our sins.

Why is the resurrection so important? The resurrection of Jesus makes Christianity different from religion because we are dealing with a real, live person, not just principles. Christianity is fellowship with a real person who is alive.

Also, forgiveness of sins is not obtained by a doctrine, but by Christ Himself. If Jesus did not rise from the dead, He can not give salvation to us. However, He did rise from the dead and now He lives forever to make intercession for us (Heb. 7:25).

It is Christ living in us that gives us power to live a victorious life. If there was no resurrection, there would be no power.

The resurrected life of Jesus is the guarantee of our physical regeneration.

Because Jesus conquered death, the fear and sting of death have been removed for us. This produces great comfort for those who believe.

So, faith in the present ministry of Jesus is essential to true Christianity, and would be impossible if Jesus was not alive. Without Jesus being alive, Christianity would be just another dead religion.

HOW PATHETIC …

I once read a story of a man who visited an infirmed old lady who used to work for a very wealthy man. As the visitor sat next to the lady’s bed, a frame hanging on her wall caught his attention.

Looking closer, he exclaimed, “Do you know that this is actually the last will and testament of your employer? It names you as the sole beneficiary of all that he has!”
For 50 years—since the day her employer passed on—that poor lady had worked day and night eking out an existence for herself, when all of her previous employer’s estate had been given to her to enjoy.

Today, let us not live in ignorance of all that Jesus died to give us! Let us keep listening to the gospel preached, learn all about our inheritance in Christ, and begin to enjoy all the benefits and blessings that we have in Him!

SNUG AS A BUG IN A RUG!

I will both lie down in peace, and sleep; for You alone, O LORD, make me dwell in safety. —Psalm 4:8

When I was a child, my family lived in a house my father built in the cedar breaks west of Duncanville, Texas. Our house had a small kitchen-dinette area, two bedrooms, and a great room with a large stone fireplace in which we burned 2-foot-long cedar logs. That fireplace was the center of warmth in our home.

There were five people in our family: my father and mother, my sister, my cousin, and me. Since we had only two bedrooms, I slept year-round on a porch with canvas screens that rolled down to the floor. Summers were delightful; winters were cold.

I remember dashing from the warmth of the living room onto the porch, tiptoeing across the frost-covered plank floor in my bare feet, leaping into bed and burrowing under a great mountain of blankets. Then, when hail, sleet, or snow lashed our house and the wind howled through the eaves like a pack of wolves, I snuggled down in sheltered rest. “Snug as a bug in a rug,” my mother used to say. I doubt that any child ever felt so warm and secure.

Now I know the greatest security of all: God Himself. I can “lie down in peace, and sleep” (Ps. 4:8), knowing that He is my shelter from the stinging storms of life. Enveloped in the warmth of His love, I’m snug as a bug in a rug.

Leaning, leaning,
Safe and secure from all alarms;
Leaning, leaning,
Leaning on the everlasting arms.

No one is more secure than those who are in God’s hands.

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