RSS

II: THE IDENTIFICATION OF CHRIST WITH US

SEVEN FUNDAMENTALS OF THE CROSS

TWO: THE WORK OF THE CROSS

II: THE IDENTIFICATION OF CHRIST WITH US

By: Brother Cliff

Jesus was born of the Virgin Mary in fulfillment of the Edenic prophecy: “And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed….” Though Joseph was entrusted with raising up Jesus as his child, God was His Father. Mary was impregnated by the Holy Spirit with the Holy Seed: Christ the Living Word. Though Mary clothed the Word with human flesh, the Blood formed in the developing Christ-child in the womb was from the Seed of the Father.

The body of Jesus Christ was fully human; as concerning His flesh. It was no different than the flesh of any man or woman ever descended from Adam and Eve. And yet, the Blood flowing within the veins of His body, was and ever is, the very Blood of God!

Lev 17:11 For the life of the flesh is in the blood: and I have given it to you upon the altar to make an atonement for your souls: for it is the blood that maketh an atonement for the soul.

 

Advertisements
 
Leave a comment

Posted by on 09/07/2018 in Friends on Fire

 

Tuesdays Torch week 500

Tuesday’s Torch

09/04/18

By: Tim Sader

I would hurry to my place of shelter, far from the tempest and storm. (Psalm 55:8)

The next home improvement project that couldn’t wait to be done was our master bathroom remodel so that we could more easily access it. God is always molding our lives into the image of who he created us be. It’s no mistake Jesus was a carpenter because He is in the business of remodeling our lives. A couple days after this project was finished a major tropical system blew into the Charleston area. It wasn’t a hurricane or anything named but it was full of moisture and wasn’t moving away from the tri-county area. In four days this storm dumped up to 28 inches of rain in some places. It caused catastrophic flooding downtown, along the rivers edges and in low-lying neighborhoods. The flooding was so bad it washed away roads, closed down parts of the interstate and caused some bridges to fail. In Columbia the same storm system was too much for a dam to hold, it failed putting neighborhoods completely under water and drainage was backed up so waters subsided very slowly. After about a day of constant rain we started hearing reports of flooding and knew there would be even more rain. On day two they started opening shelters on higher ground so displaced people could go there if they were in flood prone areas. At this point stress levels at our house were quite high. We were thinking great we just got settled here but waters were encroaching on us and how would we escape flash flooding with our wheelchairs. There was no water coming up to our door just inches off the ground but the street was flowing like a river and the water run off ditch behind our fence was filling fast. We thought should I stay or should I go but leaving home to stay at a shelter is no easy task so we didn’t want to leave. In the middle of all this was my 26th birthday and I couldn’t even leave the house to celebrate. I was just fine with this because I was inside, staying dry with my wife beside me and she is my special gift. Finally the next day the rain stopped and we were able to sit on the front patio and watch the sun set together.

During this storm I cannot stress enough how upsetting it was for the three of us. Sammy doesn’t do well with storms because when she was about three her family stayed during hurricane Hugo so rain and wind triggers her PTSD. Also she has Cerebral Palsy which gives her an over active startle reflex so sudden noises, flashes, gusts of wind or pounding rain makes her jump and have painful spasms. After four days of this her body was spent and she could get some relief. My mom who helps us was worried that something would happen suddenly and there was no way she could rescue us all. She felt it was better to go to a shelter than be stuck underwater. This was very true and had the water raised faster or I saw any sign this was going to happened I’d have gladly left. Since we just got settled at home and I felt somewhat at peace in this storm I was adamant about not leaving. My faith where weather is concerned is pretty confident in what God can do. I have rarely missed an appointment because of rainy weather. When I speak to the weather and tell it to change at least 75 percent of the time it happens. I don’t know why this is but it always reminds me of when Jesus calmed the storm and rebuked the disciples for their lack of faith (Mt 8:24-26). During this storm when the house was upset or when I felt myself starting to worry I would pray or speak to the storm. Though I didn’t want to seek physical shelter I hurried to find shelter in the Lord who kept us safe from this tempest. I prayed that a wall surround our house keeping flood waters out like when God stopped the Jordan River so the priests could carry the ark across on dry land (Jo 3:15-16). God said He is a shelter from the heat, a refuge from the storm and rain (Is 4:6). If we say He is our refuge than He will be our dwelling and no harm or disaster will come near our residence (Ps 91:9-10). This storm came suddenly upon us and there was no plan in place for us to leave so we trusted God and no harm came near us. In every major weather event it is good to make wise choices and listen to the experts so staying isn’t always wise but when storms come upon us God will provide adequate shelter to us.

Lord I ask that you increase our faith and take away the fear I feel when I face any kind of storm in this life. Help us to trust you that when flood waters rise and life rages around us that you are not afraid and will keep us afloat. I ask that you would stop those winds and rain by surrounding us with invisible walls of protection and a shelter to cover our heads so no harm or disaster may overtake us. Lord I pray for those who have been overcome by tragic circumstances and or prayed for safety but seemed to find none. Show us God that you are there and that you always have been in spite of the outcome of living in a fallen world. In Jesus Name, Amen

Tuesdays Torch has been viewed in countries all across the globe through our website and social media. We pray the words of every Torch will sink into the hearts and minds of readers. Please share Tuesdays Torch and encourage others with it. To partner with Tuesdays Torch and help expand our reach please contact us. We pray the Lord will touch our readers. All of what Christ did was so we would believe. He told us not to believe because of what He said but in what He did (John 14:11). Every Tuesday we talk about what He did and is still doing. The best thing God’s done is send His Son so we could be saved (John 3:16). If anyone is not a believer we pray they will invite the Lord into their lives by asking Him to forgive their sins and believing that He is the Son of God. Please share testimonies, feedback or encouraging words by email at: tuesdaystorch@gmail.com we enjoy hearing from you. Look out for next Tuesdays Torch on our website http://www.tuesdaystorch.com , by email, Facebook and Twitter @tuesdaystorch Thanks and God Bless!

No one lights a lamp and hides it in a clay jar or puts it under a bed. Instead, they put it on a stand, so that those who come in can see the light. Luke 8:16

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on 09/04/2018 in Torches

 

Blog from March 5, 2016

09/03/18

By: Cindy Lundhagen

(A continuation from 3 March) So here I was left wondering why God was reaching out to me. Wondering what, if anything, I was to make of “The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want”. I had no clue so I asked God to show me. It wasn’t like I was asking Him to prove Himself to me (He already had). I was simply asking Him to help me figure it out. Knowing myself, as the idiot I mostly am, I might have it all right there in front of me and still miss it. So I asked Him to make it obvious. If there was something God wanted from me, I just needed clarity and I would do it… Then I went back to my normal life routine but with a new willingness to be open to possibilities. And I continued with my commitment of reading God’s story…though now I was hungry for more…and sometimes read two chapters per day.

Approximately six months later, I was driving my daughter and her friends to Ashley Ridge High School in the morning as usual…when I noticed a billboard. The billboard simply read “Ashley Ridge Church” and pretty much nothing else…at least that I can recall. It was a simple message and I’m all about simplicity. For the next several weeks as I drove the kids to school I felt like I was being pulled towards this billboard. It just would not leave me alone…and frankly it was becoming annoying. Maybe, just maybe, this was supposed to be something. If so, God didn’t just give me a sign…He made it big and simple (for the idiot)…and apparently with magnetism…so I wouldn’t, couldn’t miss it. Looking back, I know now that my God (and yours) has a great sense of humor. Or maybe He just knew that I truly am such an idiot that a billboard was deemed necessary…whichever and whatever…it really matters not…at this point.

Anyway, I finally couldn’t take it anymore so I decided to look up this Ashley Ridge Church on the internet in an attempt to put it all behind me (to find closure with the darn billboard so I could drive past it in peace). As I am sure I alluded to before, I had absolutely no desire or interest in going to a church. I hadn’t been inside a church for anything other than official events (weddings, funerals, etc) since before my parents got divorced…when I was pretty young…and now I was pretty old. I thought there is no way I am going to get all dressed up on Sunday mornings to go sit with a bunch of church people who probably won’t accept someone like me…with my track record and issues. I didn’t want to listen to some preacher lecture me on the wrong doings of my life and my need “to get right with God” and my likely destination of the fiery abyss. My older sister joined a convent (for a time) and became a nun after leaving home. In my mind she simply left one form of prison for another. I could not discern where church might be of any value. I wanted NOTHING to do with church.

But I owed an immense debt of gratitude to God, so on the off-chance that He was trying to show me something, I would at least investigate. And I was surprised by my initial findings. The website said the church was relatively new and the service was currently being held in the high school. It said “come as you are”. The things conveyed as their vision and core values did not offend me but rather resonated with me: (1) We need God (2) We need each other (3) The world needs us…and life is just done BetterTogether (though I think this piece actually came about a little later). And then I found the podcasts of the sermons. I randomly clicked on one and listened. I was captivated…and eventually moved (remember I am stubborn and rebellious by nature)…

More to come with the next continuation…

Cindy Lundhagen — Summerville, SC

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on 09/03/2018 in Friends on Fire

 

Tuesdays Torch week 499

Tuesday’s Torch

08/28/18

By: Tim Sader

For the Lord will rebuild Zion and appear in his glory. (Psalm 102:16)

We had a busy first month slowly unpacking, making improvements and buying things we needed so we could get settled in. That month also we started going to a young couple’s home group so we could grow our faith together with others. When we gather to experience God together He is there with us and the power of His Holy Spirit is present to change things. The next month things slowed down some and we started feeling settled into our new home. The next project that needed to be done as soon as our tile guy could get us on his schedule was the bathroom. Our shower was a built in unit and was very small with a step up so getting in and out was not easy. Before calling the tile guy Sammy’s family always deals with we got a couple other quotes. They were anywhere from four to ten thousand dollars. This was way more than we were able to pay. The other guy only charged us like 800 dollars for labor if we did the demo and bought all the supplies. One day we took a trip to Lowes and Home Depot to compare prices and find the tile we wanted. We got all the tile we needed, a sink and ordered a toilet that was slightly higher then what we had. I think all together we paid just under 2500 dollars and he even had to jack hammer the floor to move the drain. Sammy’s dad did the demo and put in the new handicap accessible sink and toilet after the tiling was done. Nothing came out of the house easy and none of the projects here have been easy but they have all come together nicely. The first few days of work when they had to use the jackhammer we couldn’t be in the house because of all the dust. The day before we packed our bag and after going to home group we went and stayed at a hotel. We stayed gone most of the next day until the dusty work was done. When they did the work they tried to close off the master bath but quite a bit of dust still got into the room. We were smart and covered our electronics with sheets because we have a NASA command center across the front wall of our room to protect. The only thing it got on was our fan and air purifier that blew dust at us for weeks. All in all the renovation went well and we have a beautiful bathroom that we can more easily use.

Much in the same way that we remodeled our bathroom that is what God does with our lives when we choose to follow Him. The Lord is into rebuilding things that are ruined. He will rebuild Zion and appear in His glory. Jerusalem the city of David where the temple was built up on the mount is Zion. The Lord is building the New Jerusalem it will fully be restored when He appears in His glory. Salvation comes from Zion; this is how He will restore His people so we may rejoice and be glad (Ps. 53:6). There is a reason Jesus grew up a carpenter because He is in the business of remodeling our lives. We are the clay and God is the potter who forms our lives into the image of His son (Is. 64:8). How can we say to Him, why was I made this way? The potter has the right to make the lump of clay into pottery for many different purposes (Rom 9:20-21). God is constantly forming our lives and restoring us to the best we can be so that we can more easily fulfill our purpose. We do this by not being conformed to the pattern of this world but being transformed by the renewing of our mind. This is the way we can test and approve the perfect will of God for our lives (Rom 12:2). If we are in Christ we are a new creation, the old design has been demolished the new model is here (2 Cor 5:17). The God of grace who has called each of us to eternal glory through Christ Jesus, after we have overcome this world will restore us, make us strong, firm and steadfast (1 Pt 5:10). Just like we made a bathroom function for us the best that it can by making the necessary changes, Christ is renovating our lives so His glory may appear in us. Our newly created bathroom turned out great just as Jesus is making us great for His purpose in us.

Lord we ask that you would rebuild us so that your glory will appear in us. We thank you God for the salvation we find in your Son Jesus so that we may be a people restored by you. Lord mold us like the potter molds the lump of clay into something special and help us to fulfill the purpose we have been created for. Transform us God and help us to renew our minds in you so that we will be free from the pattern of the world. Help us to only approve what is your perfect will so that we are pleasing to you. We thank you God that after we suffer through this world that eternity belongs to us through Christ. Restore us God make us strong, firm and steadfast. In Jesus Name, Amen

Tuesdays Torch has been viewed in countries all across the globe through our website and social media. We pray the words of every Torch will sink into the hearts and minds of readers. Please share Tuesdays Torch and encourage others with it. To partner with Tuesdays Torch and help expand our reach please contact us. We pray the Lord will touch our readers. All of what Christ did was so we would believe. He told us not to believe because of what He said but in what He did (John 14:11). Every Tuesday we talk about what He did and is still doing. The best thing God’s done is send His Son so we could be saved (John 3:16). If anyone is not a believer we pray they will invite the Lord into their lives by asking Him to forgive their sins and believing that He is the Son of God. Please share testimonies, feedback or encouraging words by email at: tuesdaystorch@gmail.com we enjoy hearing from you. Look out for next Tuesdays Torch on our website http://www.tuesdaystorch.com , by email, Facebook and Twitter @tuesdaystorch Thanks and God Bless!

No one lights a lamp and hides it in a clay jar or puts it under a bed. Instead, they put it on a stand, so that those who come in can see the light. Luke 8:16

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on 08/28/2018 in Torches

 

ATONEMENT – at/one/ment [EXCHANGE]

SEVEN FUNDAMENTALS OF THE CROSS

TWO: THE WORK OF THE CROSS

I: ATONEMENT – at/one/ment [EXCHANGE]

By: Brother Cliff

Every sinner is both responsible and accountable before God for their sin. All are guilty. All are condemned to die; as God in righteous judgment has decreed. A condemned man cannot die in the place of another condemned man so that the other sinner may go free. Each must suffer the Divine penalty for their own sin. Only a sinless man could ever take the place of another and die as the penalty for their sin, that the guilty one might go free. But all from Adam have sinned. And all are selfish. So, who could qualify to save the sinner? And if there ever was a sinless one who could die as a an acceptable substitute before God; why would they die bearing the eternal punishment due the sin of others?

Only God, Who is Holy, could.

Only God, Who is Love, would. And did!

Mat 1:23 Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us.

Joh 1:29 The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world. 

For it is the blood that maketh atonement… 

There are two major themes of the Atonement of Jesus Christ on behalf of the human race. They are the identification of Jesus Christ with fallen mankind, and the substitution of Jesus Christ for fallen mankind. In order to take our place and die our death, He must be one of us; yet, without sin. He was. He did. 

2Co 5:21 For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.

Brother Cliff — Fort Mill, SC

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on 08/24/2018 in Friends on Fire

 

Tuesdays Torch week 498

Tuesday’s Torch

08/21/18

By: Tim Sader 

For where two or three gather in my name, there am I with them. (Matthew 18:20)

After an extended stay with Sammy’s family the closing on our new house finally happened so Baby and me could finally be home together. God dwells among us who chose to make Him our refuge when we dedicate our lives fully to Him. The first night in our new house was nice we got the beds up and most of the bigger furniture pieces in their appropriate rooms. Most of our boxes just got piled up in the garage so we could go through them at our own pace. Some of them were easy to unpack in the kitchen and living area. Others we went through slowly so we could decide what to keep, give away or throw out. It seemed strange because we thought we downsized to move but there was still so much stuff we didn’t need. While we were unpacking we ate a lot of to go food off of cardboard boxes with plastic silverware. The first few days we took some shopping trips to buy stuff we needed around the house and use gift cards from our wedding. We bought a mop, broom, dust pan, bucket cleaning products, a trash and recycling bin for in the house at target. At Bed, Bath and Beyond we bought a couple more sheet sets for our bed and one set each for the other two rooms. One day we went to Big Lots and got a small café table that was perfect for Sammy, a memory foam mattress cover and a stand for the smart TV her dad and Darlene bought for our wedding gift. We went ten days without satellite, home phone or internet this felt like forever to us because that is what we need to stay busy. Sammy was able to get this bill in her name which felt exciting to her. A few days after getting hooked up with ATT Uverse I had to go to Charlotte for one last MDA appointment scheduled for me. Sammy was uneasy letting me go so we prayed for safety on the journey and it was a good thing we did because we came inches from an incident with a semi-truck. When we moved in we planned to make some improvements to the house so it would be better for us. Our friends Kadie and RG came one Saturday to help us clean up the yard and put up a new fan in the living room. They trimmed the crepe myrtle and extended the front patio using pavers. A couple weeks later Sammys dad brought us a gallon of paint and our friend Miles painted our bedroom a soft grey color.

We had a busy first month in our new home; in the midst of all this we were going to church and got signed up for a young couples home group and discipleship classes. After getting back from Charlotte our church had a meeting for people to get more involved with eachother at church. Meeting with other younger couples from our church was exciting for us as newlyweds. It is one way we were welcoming God into our relationship. We got in the van and left for our first home group meeting and as soon as we parked the sky opened up. It started pouring rain, thundering and lightning. We sat there for a half hour thinking it’d just pass over but it didn’t. When we left the road getting out of their neighborhood was flooded so much that water was coming in the bottom of our door. We drove back home less than five miles away, it was sunny and looked like it hadn’t rained. This was very disappointing for our first homegroup but we gave it the best try that we could. After this we made it most Sunday evenings until we stopped having it right before the holidays. We have been set free from the prison that sin had us locked up in, praise Jesus. This is why the righteous gather because He has been so good to us though we do nothing to deserve it (Ps 142:7). Where only two or three of us gather in His name he is there with us. When crowds gather around Jesus He shows up and miraculous things happen all around Him (Mk 1:33-34). When we get together and pray it shakes things up, the Holy Spirit fills us up so we can boldly live and proclaim the word of God (Act 4:31). When we gather at church or in various groups it is to help point eachother toward love and good deeds. This is difficult for us to do if we fail to meet with other believers on a regular basis. We need each other for encouragement so we will remember to keep the faith (Heb 10:24:25). As Christian couples we have the unique opportunity to continually be in the prescence God. Sammy and I try to involve ourselves in spiritual growth together so we can help eachother grow in our faith.

Lord we thank you for always being with us and for you to be more so there when we gather in your name. I ask that when we gather you would do great things in our midst. We pray that your spirit would fall on us so that your word would come alive in our lives. Lord surround us with other believers to be gathered with who would always point us to do what you would do and may we not neglect to do so. Help us to be encouraged and to be an encouragement to others so that in hard times we would be able to keep the faith. In Jesus Name, Amen

Tuesdays Torch has been viewed in countries all across the globe through our website and social media. We pray the words of every Torch will sink into the hearts and minds of readers. Please share Tuesdays Torch and encourage others with it. To partner with Tuesdays Torch and help expand our reach please contact us. We pray the Lord will touch our readers. All of what Christ did was so we would believe. He told us not to believe because of what He said but in what He did (John 14:11). Every Tuesday we talk about what He did and is still doing. The best thing God’s done is send His Son so we could be saved (John 3:16). If anyone is not a believer we pray they will invite the Lord into their lives by asking Him to forgive their sins and believing that He is the Son of God. Please share testimonies, feedback or encouraging words by email at: tuesdaystorch@gmail.com we enjoy hearing from you. Look out for next Tuesdays Torch on our website http://www.tuesdaystorch.com , by email, Facebook and Twitter @tuesdaystorch Thanks and God Bless!

No one lights a lamp and hides it in a clay jar or puts it under a bed. Instead, they put it on a stand, so that those who come in can see the light. Luke 8:16

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on 08/21/2018 in Torches

 

Blog from March 3, 2016

March 3, 2016

08/20/18

By: Cindy Lundhagen

(A continuation from 25 Feb) So I had made a conscious decision to really try to get to know God…by starting with reading His story. But first I needed to get a Bible. Little did I know…there appeared to be all sorts of Bibles. What the heck? So I just picked the first one…the King James Version (in hindsight…if you’ve never read the Bible before…heed my advice and don’t pick the KJV on your first go of it). But I was invested…so I began. It was a bit of a slug fest at first…getting used to the language style and the genealogy (I mean…really…who is this guy Methuselah who gets to live 969 years…apparently our life expectancy has really shrunk…or they measured differently…but I digress). The story got intriguing very quickly, I was enthralled and I stayed with it…one chapter a day.

Then on the night of August 12, 2013 I started having severe abdominal pain that got progressively worse. It became nearly unbearable so I told Corey we were going to the Emergency room. It was diagnosed as a ruptured appendix and I was told I needed emergency surgery as soon as they could get the “on call” surgeon on site. I didn’t have much time to think…just got busy trying to make arrangements for someone to come get Corey in the middle of the night. Then my immediate instinct was to pray. Once again I turned to God. I first pleaded for Him to take care of me because my daughter still needed her mom and she was my everything. But then I changed my request to one of surrender to God’s will and that I trusted Corey in His care no matter what. She was His before she was ever mine after all. An incredible sense of calm and peace washed over me. I went into the operating room with absolutely no fear and no worry.

As I was coming awake from the anesthesia, something very strange happened. I had these words running through my head: “The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want”. They were words that didn’t mean anything to me at the time but they kept a running loop going on in my head…sorta like when you get a song stuck in your head that you can’t get out. I finally pushed it to the back of my mind and tried to forget it. Many months later I was told these words were the first verse of Psalm 23…which I had read approximately one week before surgery.

I went home from the hospital the next day and went to resume my daily Bible reading. Where I had left off was Psalm 30 which contains this as verse 2: “Lord, my God, I called to you for help and you healed me”. I was stunned. This was exactly what had just happened. I had cried out to Him and He had gotten me through the surgery to remove what the doctor called a life threatening, very necrotic ruptured appendix. I could not simply reconcile this as chance or coincidence. I was on page 525 of the Bible and had, to date, read 507 chapters (yes I counted them) and literally thousands of verses involving all kinds of things. What were the odds that I would read this particular verse right then? If I were a gambler, I wouldn’t take that bet. I am convinced to this day that I had just gotten a direct message from God (before you say it…I started to think I was a little crazy too…but it gets even better and I am so convicted that this was an under-rated miracle).

So then that took me back to the verse running through my head at the hospital…the whole “The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want” thing. Was that supposed to mean something to me as well? You will see in the next continuation…

Cindy Lundhagen — Summerville

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on 08/20/2018 in Friends on Fire