Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Don't Mess with the Snake

NEW BIBLE STUDY: The Judgment Seat of Christ. Did you know this judgment isn’t to punish you, but to reward you?
*********************************
Don't Mess with the Snake
This week a security guard working at a hotel in Bali, Indonesia was killed when he tried to capture a 15-foot-long python. The 59-year-old man picked up the snake and put its head and tail on his shoulders, thinking he could easily handle the reptile. Imagine his horror when the python wrapped itself around his neck and strangled him. Bystanders watched the tragedy but were unwilling to help the man, fearing the same fate for themselves. The snake escaped into nearby bushes and hasn’t been found.

I’m sure this man felt confident that he could handle the snake, but he underestimated the power of the huge serpent. Many people make the same mistake when they play with a particular temptation, thinking they can walk away at any time. But to their horror they underestimate the power of the serpent and find that they cannot escape its grip.

Satan is called the serpent in the Bible (2 Cor. 11:3, Rev. 12:9,15) and his power lies in his ability to deceive people. He makes us think we can play with temptation and handle it, but it’s all a trap. Keep this story in mind and don’t underestimate the serpent’s power, or you could end up like that security guard.
www.kentcrockett.blogspot.com
***************************************************
Read studies on BIBLE PROPHECY and END TIMES at Making Life Count Ministries. Learn what the Bible teaches about the Antichrist, the Rapture, and the Second Coming.

Two books to help you enjoy life:
SlayingYour Giants ($8.99) is filled with numerous interesting stories, humor, and practical advice (for teenagers and adults). Includes a free discussion guide for small group studies.

The Sure Cure for Worry ($11.65) contains amazing true stories and will help the reader see God is in control. (For those who may doubt the existence of God and those who need guidance)

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Simeon Prophesies Over Jesus

When Jesus was eight days old, Joseph and Mary took Him to the Temple in Jerusalem to present Him to the Lord (Read Luke 2:21-35). Unbeknownst to them, an elderly man named Simeon was already waiting for them. The Holy Spirit had revealed to him that he would not die until he saw the Messiah, so that day the Spirit guided him into the temple complex. Simeon is an example for us in three ways.

1. Simeon knew how to hear from God. He lived close to the heart of God and had a passion to see the long-awaited Messiah. God spoke to him that he would see the Christ before he died.

2. Simeon knew how to be guided by the Spirit. The Holy Spirit guided him into the temple at just the right time when Joseph and Marry would arrive. When Simeon saw Jesus, he knew that He was the Messiah. Again we see how clearly this man was in touch with God. He didn’t have an angel pointing Him out. Immediately when he saw Jesus, he prayed, “Now Lord, you can let your servant depart in peace, according to your word, for my eyes have seen your salvation.” (2:29-30). This was another sign to Joseph and Mary concerning His identity.

3. Simeon knew how to speak God’s message. He prophesied to Mary that Jesus was appointed for the fall and rise of many in Israel … and that a sword would pierce her own soul (v.34-35). This was not what Mary wanted to hear about her child! But obviously, God wanted her to hear it so she would know that He would become the sacrificial Lamb for the sins of the world. Years later, as she watched Jesus die on the cross, no doubt she remembered this prophecy of Simeon.

We all need to hear from God, be guided by the Holy Spirit, and boldly speak His truth to others. It all begins by drawing near to Him and being willing to do His will. www.kentcrockett.blogspot.com
******************************************
Read studies on BIBLE PROPHECY and END TIMES at Making Life Count Ministries. Learn what the Bible teaches about the Antichrist, the Rapture, and the Second Coming.

Two books to help you grow in your faith:
SlayingYour Giants (ON SALE for $8.99) is filled with numerous interesting stories, humor, and practical advice (for teenagers and adults)
The Sure Cure for Worry (ON SALE for $11.74) contains some amazing true stories and will help the reader see God is in control. (For those who may doubt the existence of God and those who need guidance)

Friday, December 20, 2013

Why the Virgin Birth?

There is much more to the Christmas story than a baby laying in a manger. Who was this baby? Why did He come to earth? Why was it necessary for Jesus to be born of a virgin? A supernatural person required a supernatural birth. Here are reasons for the supernatural conception.

Reason #1: To prepare a body so He could be sacrificed for the sins of the world.
When Jesus left heaven to come to earth, God the Father prepared a body for Him in the womb of Mary. Heb. 10:5 says, “Therefore, when He comes into the world, He says, "Sacrifice and offering You have not desired, but a body You have prepared for Me.” This is a conversation between the Word (Jesus) and God (the Father) as He is coming into the world. He says that the Old Testament animal sacrifices were not sufficient, so God prepared a body for Jesus to be the sacrifice for the sins of the world. This body was carried inside the womb of the virgin Mary when she was conceived by the Holy Spirit (Luke 1:30-35, Matt. 1:20-25).

Reason #2: To have pure blood to cleanse people from their sins.
The blood that flows in an unborn babies arteries and veins is not derived from the mother but is produced through the male sperm. The mother contributes no blood at all. It is only after the male element has entered the ovum that blood can develop. Since Jesus had no human father, God created the pure blood in His veins with the ability to cleanse us from all sin.

Hebrews 9:22 says, “And according to the Law, one may almost say, all things are cleansed with blood, and without shedding of blood there is no forgiveness.”  God made from one blood all the nations of the earth (Acts 17:26 NKJV). Because sinful humanity has a poisoned bloodstream, the virgin birth was necessary to provide Him with pure blood. When Jesus died on the cross, He entered the holy place in Heaven with His own blood to obtain eternal redemption (Heb. 9:12). It is only through His blood that we are cleansed of all sin (1 John 1:9).

Reason #3: To produce the Second Adam.
The New Testament refers to Jesus as the second Adam in Romans 5:12-21 and 1 Cor. 15:22, 45-47. The first Adam came from earth. The last Adam came from heaven (1 Cor. 15:47). The first Adam brought sin into the world. The second Adam, Jesus, brought righteousness into the world (Rom. 5:18-19). The sin nature is passed down from generation to generation, but through the virgin birth, the sin nature was circumvented and allowed the Son of God to be born in the same innocence that Adam was created.

Did you know that Isaiah’s prophecy of the virgin birth had a double fulfillment? Did you know there is a controversy over the Hebrew word for virgin? To read an explanation on these points, click on MORE ABOUT THE VIRGIN BIRTH.
***********************************************
Slaying Your Giants is filled with numerous interesting stories, humor, and practical advice (give to teenagers and adults)
The Sure Cure for Worry contains some amazing true stories and will help the reader see that God really is in control. (Give to those who may doubt the existence of God and those who need guidance from God)
**************************************************
Read 160 Bible studies at www.makinglifecount.net  

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Conquering the Giant of Fear

When Moses sent the 12 spies into the Promised Land, they came back reporting there were giants in the land. This scared the people of Israel so much that they spent the next 38 years in the wilderness!

To receive everything that God has promised to you, you must defeat the Giant of Fear.  I’ve attached a link to an 18-minute video of me teaching about the 4 weapons you will need to use.
To watch the video, click on this link: Conquering the Giant of Fear
--Kent
www.kentcrockett.blogspot.com
www.makinglifecount.net
************************************************************
If you have been blessed by these devotionals and Bible studies, would you please consider a year-end gift to this ministry?

You can give online: DONATE WITH A CREDIT CARD

If you would prefer to mail a check to “Making Life Count Ministries” send to:
Making Life Count Ministries
P.O. Box 680174
Prattville, Alabama 36068-0174

Thank you so much for your prayers and financial support, which makes this ministry possible.

Friday, December 6, 2013

Christmas: What does "only begotten Son" mean?

Most Christians will tell you that Jesus is the only-begotten Son of God, but if you ask them what that means they cannot tell you. John 3:16 says, “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.” 

The Greek word for “only begotten” is monogenes and means “uniquely born” or “one-of-a-kind birth.” The conception and birth of Jesus was unique—nothing like it had ever happened before and will never happen again in the future.  He was conceived in the womb of a virgin by the Holy Spirit and is the only one who has two natures—divine and human; all God and all man. “Only begotten” does not mean that Jesus did not exist until the Father begat Him, which is what cults believe.

1. Jesus existed in eternity past as “the Word.” 
Jesus always existed as the Word (God) in eternity past. Micah 5:2 says His days are from eternity. John 1:1 says, “In the beginning was the Word (this was His name before “Jesus”) and the Word was with God (the Father), and the Word was God.”  This shows Jesus pre-existed as God before He came to earth and became man.

2. When Jesus left heaven to put on human flesh, “the Word” became “the Son.”
Cults teach that a father is older than a son, so Jesus must have come into existence at a point in time.  The Bible does not teach this. Jesus has always existed as God in eternity past, and the term “Son” refers to His humanity which began at His Incarnation. John 1:14 says, “And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us.” This happened 2,000 years ago when He entered a human body and was named Jesus. The Word became the Son when He came to earth.

Dr. Walter Martin, author of The Kingdom of the Cults, writes:
There is no such thing as “the eternal Son of God.” Before Jesus took upon Himself a human form, He already existed with the Father. Hebrews 1:5-6 says that when He brings the first-begotten into the world, He says, “I will be a Father to Him, and He will be a Son to Me.” This is a reference to the Incarnation. It is a change of relationship when the Word takes on flesh—the Word becomes the Son.

The terms "Father" and "Son" describe the first two Persons of the Trinity (God and Jesus), after Christ came to earth. This proves that the terms “begotten” and “sonship” refer to His humanity and not His divinity. As God, He had no beginning, was not begotten, and was not a Son. As man, He was begotten in the flesh and became the Son.  The term "Son of God" reveals His two natures: Son (humanity) and God (deity).
To read more on this topic, click here: What does “the only-begotten Son” mean?
www.kentcrockett.blogspot.com
www.makinglifecount.net
**************************************
Are “Invisible Giants” attacking your mind?  Read Slaying Your Giants
Does the nation’s $17 trillion debt frighten you?  Read The Sure Cure for Worry

Read over 150 Bible studies at www.makinglifecount.net