I was talking to God

ascension

the righteous shall live by faith

by Jack C. Corcoran

I was lying on the bed and I was thinking: yes Lord, it’s easy for the Apostles to have believed. After all, they walked with you; talked with you; ate with you; and watched you pray to the Father.

They watched you die and then; AND THEN, they watched you walk among them; they talked with you after your resurrection; they had a fish breakfast with you on the shore after you arose from the dead; they walked along the road with you after you arose from the dead.

So, of course, it was easy peasy for them to believe.

If any of them had denied talking to you after you died; they would have been lying; if any of them had denied having a meal on the shore with you after you had died, they would have been lying; and if any of them had denied watching you rise up into the clouds, they would have been lying.

It was easy for them, but what about us?

I never ate a meal with you, I never sat down and prayed with you; I never walked along the road with you; so how am I supposed to believe the way they did?

Yes, I actually had that conversation with our heavenly Father as I lay on my bed this afternoon. And He immediately answered me with the words from John 20:29: “And Jesus told him, ‘Because you have seen me, you have believed; blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.’”

Yes, it’s all about faith. That’s how we believe; by faith; Jesus says faith as small as a mustard seed.

Have you ever sat in a court room during a criminal case? I spent a lot of years in law enforcement so I naturally spent a lot of time in court. If two or three people stood up in front of the judge and testified that they saw the man pull the gun, point the gun at the other man and shoot him; would you believe it?

Of course you would; you know you would. It came straight from the mouths of three witnesses. Why wouldn’t you believe it? Well, we have at least 12 men and as possibly as many as 400 witnesses who saw Jesus after he had been crucified and died and was buried. We have 4 men who wrote the gospels and tell the story of his death and resurrection; and his ascension into the clouds.

And then, of course, there’s Peter. During Jesus’ trial, good old Peter denied even knowing him, but look at him 50 days later. He tells the crowd in Acts 2:32, “God has raised this Jesus to life, and we are all witnesses of the fact.”

And just a few days later, we see Peter talking to the Jewish leaders, the Sanhedrin, when they were forbidden to speak of this Jesus. Peter said, “Judge for yourselves whether it is right in God’s sight to obey you rather than God. For we cannot help speaking about what we have seen and heard.”

And again remember the words of Jesus to Thomas, “Because you have seen me, you have believed; blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.”

Read the 11th chapter of Hebrews. No less than nineteen times the writer of Hebrews uses the phrase “by faith” – by faith, Moses; by faith Abraham; by faith Noah; and on and on through the chapter. It is by faith that we believe.

And faith comes by hearing the word of God says another writer. In order to hear the word of God, you need to read the bible; every day as it says in Acts 17:11.

Oh Lord, fill us with the urgency to read Your holy Words. Amen

If You Believe in Jesus

by Jack C. Corcoran

Today I want to ask you a serious question: Do you believe in Jesus Christ? I mean, really believe?

If you believe in Jesus, you believe in the virgin birth; you believe that God sent His Son to us on earth by means of the virgin birth as it is written in Luke 1:34-35

If you believe in Jesus, you believe that He was tempted by Satan and resisted those temptations as it is written in Matthew 4:1-11,  and thus He was without sin.

If you believe in Jesus, you believe that he performed all the miracles as it is written throughout the four gospels; healing the blind, the lame, and raising people from the dead.

If you believe in Jesus, you believe that He became the sacrificial Lamb as the sacrifice for our sins as it is written in John 1:29.

If you believe in Jesus, you believe that He suffered and died and shed His blood as payment in full for our sins because the wages of sin is death as it is written in Romans 6:23

If you believe in Jesus, you believe that God the Father raised Him from the dead as it is written in the four Gospels i.e. Luke 24:6 when an angel tells His disciples, “He is not here; He has risen.” Whereby He has defeated death and we, those who believe, will have eternal life through Christ Jesus as it is written in 2 Timothy 1:10.

If you believe in Jesus and believe that God raised Him from the dead, then you should confess Him as your Lord as it is written in Romans 10:9. A Lord is a person who has authority, and control over another person. Is Jesus in control of your life? If you confess Him as Lord, do you obey Him as it is written in Matthew. 28:20 or Luke 11:28?

If you believe in Jesus, you believe that He is the only way to inherit eternal life, that through Him is the only way to God the Father as it is written in 1 Timothy 2:5.

If you believe in Jesus then you believe that you have been forgiven all your sins and cleansed from all unrighteousness as it is written in 1 John 1:9.

And if you believe in Jesus, you believe that through Him you have been made righteous as it is written in Romans 5:19 and you will begin to live by faith because it is written that “the righteous will live by faith.” Romans 1:17 and Galatians 3:11.

And finally, if you believe in Jesus, you will believe that Jesus has baptized you with the Holy Spirit as it is written in Matthew 3:11 and in John 14:25-26 where Jesus, himself says that we will receive the Holy Spirit from the Father and that He, the Holy Spirit, will teach us and remind us of the things Christ has told us.

So, if you believe in Jesus, you must believe that you have been cleansed of all sin; that you now live under control of His Holy Spirit; and that you are a light to this sinful world.

“For this is what the Lord has commanded us: I have made you a light.” Acts 13:47

“You are the light of the world…let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven.” Matthew 5:14-16

So, if you are a true believer, let your light shine. Don’t hide your faith; learn to use the word of God in your conversations. Remember; in Mark 8:37 Jesus says “If anyone is ashamed of Me and my words…the Son of Man will be ashamed of him…”

Let them know who you are and what you are in Christ and if they ask you why you believe, be ready to tell them. Be a true believer.

And my prayer for you comes from the word as well; “May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all. Amen