If We Believe in the Lord Jesus

January 18, 2007

If we believe in the Lord Jesus, what will happen? The Bible says about it at many times and in various ways. A farmer sows seed in his field in spring for a fall crop. But the seed does not bear fruit directly. It has to go through the process of bearing fruit at many times and in various ways until the fruit of it is brought into the barn, just as the Lord Jesus said, “first the stalk, then the head, then the full kernel in the head.”Without faith in God who sent Jesus, no one can believe in Jesus who was sent. The Lord Jesus himself said, “Trust in God; trust also in me (John 14:1).” And again, the Bible says in detail about it, “And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him (Hebrews 11:6).”

Faith comes from hearing the message, but not everyone has faith. Salvation through faith is not from men, but it is the gift that is given in Christ Jesus by God. The gift is not given to everyone. It is written, “No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love him (1 Corinthians 2:9).” Faith and salvation are the gift of God that is given to those who love him. It is written, “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith–and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God (Ephesians 2:8).”

There are three different kinds of people in the world: 1) those who do not know God, 2) those who know God, but do not love him and do not obey the gospel, 3) those who know God and truly love him. First, it is written about those who do not know God, “But these, like natural brute beasts made to be caught and destroyed, speak evil of the things they do not understand, and will utterly perish in their own corruption (2 Peter 2:12).” And again, “But these speak evil of whatever they do not know; and whatever they know naturally, like brute beasts, in these things they corrupt themselves. (Jude 1:10).” Second, there are so many testimonies about those who know God but do not love him. The typical one is the parable of ten thousand talents and a hundred denarii, which the Lord himself spoke.

An ancient prophet said about the three different kinds of people in the world, “In the whole land, declares the LORD, two-thirds will be struck down and perish; yet one-third will be left in it. This third I will bring into the fire; I will refine them like silver and test them like gold. They will call on my name and I will answer them; I will say, ‘They are my people,’ and they will say, ‘The LORD is our God (Zechariah 13:8-9).'” And again, the Lord Jesus said by his apostle, “He will punish those who do not know God and do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus. They will be punished with everlasting destruction and shut out from the presence of the Lord and from the majesty of his power (2 Thessalonians 1:8-9).”

Here, what we should be warned about is the false brothers who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus, as it is written, “For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened. Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images made to look like mortal man and birds and animals and reptiles. Therefore God gave them over in the sinful desires of their hearts to sexual impurity for the degrading of their bodies with one another. They exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator–who is forever praised. Amen (Romans 1:21-25).”

The false brothers who say they believe in the Lord Jesus, but do not obey the gospel are causing trouble all over the house of God. It is written, “He must hold firmly to the trustworthy message as it has been taught, so that he can encourage others by sound doctrine and refute those who oppose it. For there are many rebellious people, mere talkers and deceivers, especially those of the circumcision group. They must be silenced, because they are ruining whole households by teaching things they ought not to teach–and that for the sake of dishonest gain (Titus 1:9-11).” If we believe in the Lord Jesus, we are not in the flesh but in the Spirit. It is written that anyone who believes in the Son of God has the witness in himself. Therefore, the Bible says, “Examine yourselves as to whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Do you not know yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you?–unless indeed you are disqualified. (2 Corinthians 13:5)?”

If I believe in the Lord Jesus and Jesus Christ is in me, now I am not in the flesh but in the Spirit. If so, my old self died with Jesus on the cross by obeying the gospel by faith, and the new self has been raised with Christ, and now I am a child of God. It is written, “For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Live as children of light (Ephesians 5:8).” Therefore, now I and my family are replaced. The family of the flesh who were born of blood, and of the will of the flesh, and of the will of man are replaced with the family of God who were born again of God by believing in the Lord Jesus and obeying the gospel.

The Bible exhorts the people of the house of God, “Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God. When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory (Colossians 3:1-4).”

The Lord Jesus himself said to the people of the house of God, “And do not call anyone on earth ‘father,’ for you have one Father, and he is in heaven (Matthew 23:9).” And also, “‘Who are my mother and my brothers?’ he asked. Then he looked at those seated in a circle around him and said, ‘Here are my mother and my brothers! Whoever does God’s will is my brother and sister and mother (Mark 3:33-36).'”

If we believe in the Lord Jesus and obey the gospel, then we become the children of God; we put off the old self and put on the new self; the old has gone, the new has come. If it does not become reality, the faith is useless. The Bible testifies that faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead.

If I believe in the Lord Jesus, then I and my family are replaced; I am no longer of the world but of heaven; my citizenship is in heaven. Those who enter the kingdom of God have the citizenship of the kingdom. Those who have the citizenship of the kingdom are not of the world; they are not in the flesh but in the Spirit.

The Lord Jesus himself said, “They are not of the world, just as I am not of the world (John 17:16).” The children of God are not of the world, but they will inherit their Father’s kingdom with Christ. This is the eternal gospel and the goal of our faith, the salvation of our souls.

It is a lie that anyone whose old self, which is of the world, has not died believes in Jesus. Whoever believes in Jesus surely becomes the child of God, receiving the Spirit of the Son. It is written, “‘Whoever believes in me, as the Scripture has said, streams of living water will flow from within him.’ By this he meant the Spirit, whom those who believed in him were later to receive. Up to that time the Spirit had not been given, since Jesus had not yet been glorified (John 7:38-39).” Those who receive the Spirit of the Son put off the old self and put on the new self.

Though Abraham had two sons, the son born according to the flesh was not considered his son, but only the son born through promise, whom he received by faith, was considered his son. “For it is written that Abraham had two sons: the one by a bondwoman, the other by a freewoman. But he who was of the bondwoman was born according to the flesh, and he of the freewoman through promise (Galatians 4:22-23).”

It is written, “Flesh gives birth to flesh, but the Spirit gives birth to spirit. You should not be surprised at my saying, ‘You must be born again.’ (John 3:6-7)” Thank you, Lord.

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