Chaplain Jesse

A Cup Of Cold Water…

Born Twice

“Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.” – John 3:3 (KJV)

There is a longing within everyone to be a part of a loving family that lasts. In a world of fractured marriages and dysfunctional families, that longing becomes greater. No matter what type of family we’re from, God gives all of us a chance to be part of the only family that endures the tests of time and life. We had no choice on the earthly family that we were born into, but we do have a choice on entering God’s family through faith.

Jesus calls this spiritual birth being “born again.” We all have a physical birthday, but not all of us have a spiritual birthday, which comes when we accept God’s invitation to trust in Christ as Lord and Savior and repent of our sin. With no spiritual birth, we die twice–physically and spiritually. But, with a spiritual birth, we die just once (physically), for our spirit lives forever.

Born once, we die twice. Born twice, we die once. If we’re born twice, we’re saved from spiritual death and we’re in the family of God forever.

In Matthew 10:8 said “freely ye have received, freely give. “ So the question for all of us is ‘What are we doing to increase the family of God?”

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July 23, 2016 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Position

“Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God: therefore the world knoweth us not, because it knew him not.
Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is.” 1 John 3:1-2 (KJV)

Try to measure God’s love. There isn’t a computer large enough to calculate the vastness of His love for you and me!

You become a child after your physical birth. However, you do not become a child of God until you respond to His offer of salvation and experience the new birth. At salvation, you are not made righteous, you are declared righteous by God. He lavishes you with His love, and imputes His righteousness, then you become a child of God. This new position in Christ enables you to enjoy peace with Him and assurance of eternal life.

Today, rejoice that you are a child of God. Know that the best is yet to come. What you will be has not yet been made known. There’s more to come! One day you will be like Jesus and see Him as He is.

Meanwhile, enjoy each day walking with Jesus. Focus on knowing Him intimately and making Him known globally. Your position in Christ changes everything; the here and now as well as the hereafter.

July 16, 2016 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Adopted

In the last Take 5 I encouraged you to explore the “in Christ” realities found in Paul’s letter to the church at Ephesus. In this writing, I hope we can solidify the “in Christ” realities…

  • Reality number one: I am a Saint.
  • Reality number two: I am Blessed.
  • Reality number three: I am Chosen.
  • Reality number four: I am Adopted.

“But as many as received him, to them gave hepower to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name:” John 1:12 (KJV)

If you are in Christ, then you are adopted. God gave the right for you to become a child of God. In love, God predestined you to be adopted as his child through Jesus Christ.

“According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love:
Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will,
To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved.” Eph 1:4-6 (KJV)

God’s grace is the gateway to our adoption into His family. Your adoption is formalized at conversion. God takes the initiative to draw you by convicting you of sin and convincing you of His righteousness. He gives you the freedom to choose Him or refuse Him. His salvation is available to all but only effective for those who place their trust in the completed work of Jesus on the cross.

Adoption is not an option. Adoption is a reality for those who are in Christ. Spend some time thanking God for His willingness to adopt you into His family.

July 13, 2016 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Chosen

“I have chosen the way of truth: thy judgments have I laid before me.” Psalms 119:30 (KJV)

Have you ever wondered what makes people do good things? Why would someone choose the way of truth? Why would someone set their heart on God’s laws? A person’s behavior is related to their position in Christ.

I would encourage you to explore the “in Christ” realities found in Paul’s letter to the church at Ephesus.

• Reality number one: I am a saint!
• Reality number two: I am blessed!
• Reality number three: I am chosen!

“According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love:” Eph 1:4 (KJV)

Did you choose God or did God choose you? That’s right…you were chosen by God long before you were even born. The song says, “While He (Jesus) was on the cross, I was on His mind.” Even before Jesus came to earth to live a sinless life, die a substitutionary death, and defeat sin and death, we were chosen by God. Before God splattered the stars in the universe, we were chosen. Before God spoke light into existence, we were chosen. Before God separated the day from the night, we were chosen.

Why were we chosen? We were chosen by God to be holy and blameless in His sight. Can we pull that off by ourselves? No! Does God expect us to pull that off by ourselves? No!

Jesus came so that we could live the life of being chosen. The only thing left is for us to accept, receive and walk in it.

July 8, 2016 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Vertical

“And one of the scribes came, and having heard them reasoning together, and perceiving that he had answered them well, asked him, Which is the first commandment of all?

And Jesus answered him, The first of all the commandments is, Hear, O Israel; The Lord our God is one Lord:

And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment.

And the second is like, namely this, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. There is none other commandment greater than these.” Mark 12:28-31 (KJV)

A question that each of us has to deal with from time to time is, ‘What really matters in this life?’ The answer depends on our point of reference. If we are living for what can be seen, then the answer may be very complex. However, if we are living for that which is unseen, then the answer is very simple. Love God and love others.

Jesus modeled this love in His earthly ministry. He stayed connected to the Father through daily intimacy His love relationship to the Father was among His guarded priorities. Jesus allocated His time to reflect this core value in His life.

Do we love God with all of our hearts? Do we love God with all of our soul, mind, and strength? This love represents our vertical relationship. Our vertical relationship should be our number one priority. Our effectiveness in the Kingdom of God will never rise above the level of our intimacy with God.

Think about the cross for a moment. Notice the vertical beam. This represents our relationship to God. Are we rightly related to God through faith in Jesus Christ? Are we daily nurturing our love relationship with Him?

The most essential thing to our joy and success is that we stay vertical!

June 24, 2016 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Unique

“But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood,an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light:” 1 Peter 2:9 (KJV)

What do your fingerprints, your DNA, and snowflakes have in common? Each has been uniquely designed by God and there are no two alike. Out of 6.4 billion people alive on planet earth today, there is no one exactly like you. Even if you are an identical twin, there are unique differences between you and your look alike.

God made you uniquely to fulfill His purpose and to bring Him glory on the earth. As a child of the King, you have been identified as chosen. You were selected by God to be part of His family. You were chosen to be part of His royal priesthood, His holy nation, and His possession.

How does your uniqueness benefit God? You were uniquely chosen by God to declare His praises. You have a song to sing! He called you out of darkness. Do you remember where you were when you met Jesus? He brought you into His wonderful light. From darkness into the light is the heartbeat and pulse of our praise.

You are uniquely designed by God and for God. You are His. Are you willing to allow Him to shine through your uniqueness to impact the nations for His glory? Are you willing to uniquely know Him and uniquely show Him to your family, your friends, and your future relationships?

June 18, 2016 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Blessed On Purpose

“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ:” Eph 1:3 (KJV)

Can you grasp the reality that the Creator of the universe is the reason for our very existence? We are not here by accident. He purposed for us to be born; we were planned by God. We are His treasure.

God has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ. The reality of being in Christ is that we are blessed. Due to the realism of being in Christ, we can say, “I am blessed.” Go ahead. Say it aloud; “I am blessed!” God’s resources are unlimited. He never runs out! He never runs dry! His shelves are never empty! Our God of abundance has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in Christ.

In 2 Corinthians 9:8 we read, “And God is able to make all grace abound toward you; that ye, always having all sufficiency in all things, may abound to every good work:” When someone asks you today, “How are you doing?”…don’t say, “Oh, I’m doing alright.” Instead, say with conviction and confidence and assurance, “I am blessed!” That ought to make you want to shout? Never forget who you are and Who’s you are!

June 9, 2016 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

You Are A Saint

Our position in Christ can be realized in the following affirmations:

· God is who He says He is.
· God can do what He says He can do.
· I am who God says I am.
· I can do all things through Christ.
· God’s Word is alive and active in me.

Seek to memorize these five statements and speak them aloud each morning to start your day off in the right frame of mind. It will affect your outlook and attitude in a life giving way.

Focus with me on the third affirmation: I am who God says I am. Repeat that phrase to yourself and allow it to sink in. Let’s see how we can connect this truth with Paul’s “in Christ” realities.

“Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, to the saints which are at Ephesus, and to the faithful in Christ Jesus:” Eph 1:1 (KJV)

If you are in Christ then you can affirm this reality:

Reality: I am a saint.

If you are in Christ then God says that you are a saint. A saint is one who has been set apart by God. Your faith in the atoning work of Christ on the cross transfers your identity to that of a saint. It doesn’t mean that you are perfect and immune to the presence of sin. It means that God positions you as a saint. You have a new standing before God and with God.

June 3, 2016 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

“I AM” Is The God Who Fills In Your Gaps

“And God said unto Moses, I AM THAT I AM: and he said, Thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, I AM hath sent me unto you.” (Exodus 3:14KJV).

In the very first Rocky movie, Rocky Balboa, very eloquently encourages his demure girlfriend, Adrian. “I got gaps. You got gaps. Together we got no gaps.”

But Rocky got it all wrong. He’s got gaps. Adrian’s got gaps. No person alive is going to fill those gaps. God is the only One who can fill our gaps. I’d go so far as to say that He is the One who gave us those gaps so that He can fill them. He is the great I AM who fills our gaps and fills in our blanks.

When we say, “I’m not good enough.”
God says, “I AM.”

When we say, “I’m not smart enough.”
God says, “I AM.”

When we say, “I’m not strong enough.”
God says, “I AM.”

When we say, “I’m not ________ enough.”
God says, “I AM.”

He is the God who fills in our gaps. He is the God who fills in our blanks.

I’ve often heard it said there is a God-shaped vacuum in the heart of every man that cannot be filled by another created thing but only by God, the Creator, made known through Jesus Christ.

Paul wrote: “And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly thereforePaul knew what he could accomplish on his own: nothing. Oh, he could be busy. We all can do that. But bearing “fruit that will remain” is another story. This is how he viewed his own personal weaknesses. He was given the gift of a handicap to keep him in constant touch with his limitations. Satan’s angel did his best to get

will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.” (2 Cor. 12:9, KJV).himdown; but what he in fact did was push him to his knees. No danger then of walking around high and mighty! At first he didn’t think of it as a gift,Once he

.”My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness and begged God to remove it. Three times he did that, and then God told him, “heardthat, he was glad to let it happen. He quit focusing on the handicap and began appreciating the gift. It was a case of Christ’s strength moving in on his weakness. Now he can take the limitations in stride, and with good cheer, these limitations that cut him down to size—abuse, accidents, opposition, bad breaks. He just let Christ take over! And so the weaker he got, the stronger he became (2 Cor. 12:7–10).

Paul had great confidence. The prefix “con” means “with,” and the root “fid” means “faith.” So a confident person is one who walks in faith. When you allow God to fill in your gaps with His power and provision, you will have the confidence and courage to leave the limpid land of in-between and march into the Promised Land of life to the full!

That’s where I want to go today. Where I want to live. How about you? I have gaps, and I am so thankful that God is the great I AM who fills in those gaps. He fills in my insufficiency with His all-sufficiency. He fills in my inadequacy with His all-supply. He fills in my pain with His healing purpose. Today, I will walk in faith with con-fid-ence.

May 24, 2016 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Regeneration

“There was a man of the Pharisees, named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews: The same came to Jesus by night, and said unto him, Rabbi, we know that thou art a teacher come from God: for no man can do these miracles that thou doest, except God be with him.
Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.’” John 3:1-3 (KJV)

Jesus encountered Nicodemus at night. When you stop to think about it that is when we all encounter Him. That moment when the sin in our life produces a spiritual eclipse and in the dusk we see more clearly our need for the Savior. Nicodemus was a very religious man but did not have a relationship with Jesus. He was an outstanding law abiding citizen as far as society was concerned but missed the mark of God’s perfection. He recognized Jesus as a unique teacher but failed to recognize Jesus as the Messiah.

The encounter shifted as Jesus announced that a person must be born again to see the kingdom of God. Nicodemus thought Jesus meant that a person must be born again physically. However, Jesus was speaking of a spiritual rebirth.
To be born again means to be born from above. It means to be born into. At conversion, you are born from above which means God regenerates, redeems, and reconciles you. When you place your faith in Jesus alone for salvation, you are born into His family.

“That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.” Romans 10:9-10 (KJV)

When you are born again your new identity is that of being “in Christ.” Once you are “in Christ” you become the recipient of God’s treasures as affirmed in Ephesians chapter one.

Read Paul’s letter to the church at Ephesus and underline or highlight the phrase “in Christ” each time you see it. Then, close your eyes, smile, and express your gratitude to God for your new identity.

May 7, 2016 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment