Unconditional Love vs. Conditional Grace

I once wrote that if God’s love has conditions I am okay with them but I would like to correct that writing with this weeks blog post. It is not conditional love but it is conditional grace. God loves us all and wants us all to be saved. The Bible makes that
obvious. The word Love is mentioned 310 times in the Bible.

The Grace of God is that part that is conditional you must accept the salvation through Jesus Christ.

I have heard often from skeptics that if there is a God it is unfair that they won’t be able to get into Heaven for their lack of belief, they believe they’re good people and that should be enough.

Let me give you a hypothetical scenario, a Father builds his two children a home each, he supplies them with everything they need and sends them out with a small set of rules.

Both children proceed to break these rules.

The first child immediately regrets it and apologizes to the Father, who in turn forgives him out of love. After that every time the child makes a mistake he calls the Father to apologize and tries to correct the issue. The Father always forgives him.

Now the second child goes on with his life, ignoring the fact he broke those rules, he points out that they were just the small ones anyway. But small mistakes often led to bigger ones. As time goes on this child does everything on his own, years and years pass,  now he begins to doubt the Father even built the houses, he never saw him do it, where is the proof? Then he begins to point out all the times the Father didn’t help him and even questions if he is really his Father. He stops talking to his Father all together.

Meanwhile the children’s houses begin to deteriorate, their Father decides he will build them beautiful mansions in his gated community. All they have to do is apologize for their mistakes and try their best to follow the rules and most importantly love him.

The first child is so thankful to the Father but the second isn’t, he ignores everything the Father said and continues on his way refusing to apologize for anything he has done, refusing to acknowledge his Father at all.

In the end the Father welcomes the first child into the gated community and presents him with his mansion. But when the second child shows up the Father sends him away and gives the mansion to someone else, a person who accepted him as Father, respected him and loved him.

Was the Father wrong? Did the second child who disrespected his Father and his Father’s house deserve to obtain a new house?

Of course he didn’t, like wise those who refuse to acknowledge God on Earth will not be welcomed into His dwelling either.

Accept God’s grace today.

I am going to leave you with a link to the Parable of the Lost Son, often refereed to as the Parable of the Prodigal Son. This is a perfect example of how God views us when we are astray.

https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Luke+15%3A11-32&version=NIV

As you see from the parable, the Father represents God, who will run to us with open arms when we return.

Freely run back to your Father.

Have a blessed week,
-Chris

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God and Destiny

This week I am writing about God and Destiny. I want to show despite Him giving us free will and leaving our choices up to us (see last week) some things are destined by the will of God.

Jesus’ story is the prime example of this. He knew exactly how He would die*, He knew about His resurrection*, He knew His Betrayer** and even knew Peter would deny Him.**

It is important to know that it always okay to ask God to change your course. We just need to remember when the course is not changed to accept it and trust in God, just like Jesus did. You show true faith by trusting in God in the middle of the storm.

Jesus gave us a perfect example of this as well, remember when He petitioned to the Father about his destiny in Luke 22:42, “42“Father, if You are willing, take this cup from Me. Yet not My will, but Yours be done.” 

The Father sent him an angel to comfort Him and He completed His mission just as the Father wanted.

God I pray that you guide us all to do Your will and grant us the wisdom to know when it is destined to be and the strength to battle through all of life’s storms.

Have a blessed week,
-Chris

https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Luke+9%3A21-27&version=NLT *

https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Luke+22&version=NIV **

The Right Thing

Great post by Mitch Teemley

Mitch Teemley

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It finally happened where I live: four people (including the shooter himself) died and two were injured in Cincinnati last week when an angry paranoid young man opened fire in a bank lobby. The horrific event happened just off Fountain Square, our city’s symbol of civic unity. “Enough” was the only word on the Cincinnati Enquirer’s otherwise blank Op-Ed page the next day.

Something has changed. For most of its first two centuries, my country benefited from a unifying code of values. Most married couples stayed together because it was the right thing to do. Most adults strove to make an honorable living and model moral-social responsibility to their children because it was the right thing. I lived in an agnostic home, i.e. my parents didn’t consciously adhere to the Judeo-Christian values our culture was built upon. Nevertheless, they lived by them, because it was the right thing to do.

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God’s Plan and Free Will

We hear often how God has a plan for us all and that is of course true. But we must remember that God also has given us free will to chose our own path.

Does that sound like the Bible contradicts itself? Today I will be discussing why that is not the case.

You see God has a plan for us all but He gives us options on how to go about it. It is up to us to follow that path in order to get what God has intended for us.  There is the right way and the wrong way, follow God’s guidance and He will lead you to the right way, ignore and you will go the opposite, down the wrong path.

Now the great thing about God is because of His grace, He will always be there to guide you to get back on the right path.

If you take the exit to the wrong way, there is always a ramp to get back on the right way.

God is all knowing, so he knows how it will all turn out. He sees every path in which you can take and knows each outcome that will occur based on our choices.

For example if you have been looking for a job for awhile and one day you get the urge to go to a certain place that the Lord would want you to be, it is up to you to decide to go. If God really wants you to be there He will continue to throw signs at you and do everything to show you to go but it is up to you to actually get up and make it there.

Now lets just say for the purposes of this blog, God intended for you to go because there was someone He wanted you to meet who would lead you to a great job opportunity.

But if you didn’t end up going, that opportunity is now lost. God knew the outcome of both options, He was just waiting for you to decide the path you were going to take.

Now that doesn’t mean He won’t help find you a job another day, He will be right there with you continuing to guide you through it all, hoping you chose the right path.

Another example is when the Prophets of Israel and Judah called the people to repent, their prophecies of coming judgment were warnings, if the people repented God would relent. He knew the outcome of what would happen if they did or didn’t repent.

The problem is after they did repent and the judgment didn’t come, time would pass and they would go back down the wrong path, back to their wicked ways, which led to the Judgment of God coming down on the people.

Then because of His love, God would set them up for another path, back to the plan He has for His people.

God has His plan for us, we must follow the right path in order for the plan to come to fruition.

It is very important to understand this because many scoffers have pointed out that if God makes our plans for us and everything that happens is a part of that plan, then that means He chooses who goes to Hell.

That is a complete lie.

God wants us all saved, that is why the Father sent His Son to die for our sins.

God sends no one to Hell, you only go to Hell by your own choice.

I chose to accept my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and I hope and pray for guidance to stay on the right path of God’s plan for me.

Next week I will be writing about the other side to this…destiny and when God chooses to make something happen by His own will.

Have a blessed week,
Chris

The Importance of Rest

I can’t begin to tell you the importance of rest. If you’re exhausted you need to take time to re-energize. Go with the Lord and relax. Spend quality time with Him. Take a vacation with the Lord.

Society has told us how important it is to work hard, God would agree with that but society tells us those who rest are weak. Some won’t even use their paid time off from their jobs, thinking it will make them look good if they just keep going.

It won’t look good when you burn out completely and break down.

The Bible tells us differently. We need our rest. Even God rested. Genesis 2:2, “2And on the seventh day God had finished the work He had been doing; so on that day He rested from all. His work -. ” 

In the Bible God orders us to rest as He did.

I’m leaving you with a link to some Bible verses on the importance of rest.

https://www.biblestudytools.com/topical-verses/rest-bible-verses/

Have a blessed week,
Chris

Nine Year Anniversary

I was going to mention this in my weekly blog that Sunday was my wife and I’s Nine Year Anniversary.

But when I thought that I heard God say, “Doesn’t she deserve her own entry?”

Yes she does, Lord.

Nine years ago today I met the love of my life. She credits me with introducing her to God. The Lord is the one who deserves all the credit.

I tried to talk with her about God by myself and it really didn’t go well. After praying for a long time, He softened her heart.

So many people drew her closer to the Lord not just myself.

I can’t emphasize enough how much it meant to me the day she accepted God into her heart.

She has helped mold me into the man I am today. Her and God teamed up and changed my life.

I treasure her and thank God for giving Jane to me.

Thank you Lord.
Thank you Jane.
I love you both always,
Chris