Christians, Holy?

sad lady
“When was the last time you felt you were holy, set apart and faithful?”

 “Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, To the saints who are in Ephesus, and faithful in Christ Jesus:”
~Ephesians 1:1 NKJV~

In verse one we find that Paul (formerly Saul) is laying out his testimony to the Ephesians. He is reminding them who he is and how he was called by God. This establishes his authority as an Apostle (Find out more in Acts 9).

He tells us he was called not by man or by anyone else other than the will of God. It is not by our will that we become ministers of God. God is the one who calls and prepares His people to do the work of ministry, whether that is vocational ministry or lay ministry (ministry coming from christians who are not called by God to vocational ministry).

Paul then uses the word that we translate as “saints.” There is much misunderstanding about what saints are in our culture today. Saints are not the people the Catholic Church calls saints. The word in Greek means the Holy ones, those set apart to God. That means all Christians. But some would say that they don’t feel holy or set apart. To make matters worse Paul also describes them as faithful. When was the last time you felt you were holy, set apart and faithful? If you are honest your answer should be in the negative category. But the key to this verse comes with the words “in Christ Jesus”.

Jesus is God made flesh. It is only in his taking of our sins upon himself (imputation) at the cross that we can be seen as holy (Penal Substitutionary Work).He paid your debt to that He did not owe, so that you may be seen as holy, set apart and faithful. A saint before God. Only in/through Jesus and his work are you seen this way. You can’t work to gain or keep your salvation. It is by Christ alone, in faith alone.

Through Jesus we can rejoice that we are His separated ones. This verse should not be taken negative, but joyous! We are saved and set free from sin and alive, set apart, holy and faithful due to the work of Jesus at the cross!

God is Our Refuge

God is Our Refuge
By: Rev. Joe Kramer

God is our refuge and strength,
an ever-present help in trouble.
Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way
and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea,
though its waters roar and foam
and the mountains quake with their surging.[c]

There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God,
the holy place where the Most High dwells.
God is within her, she will not fall;
God will help her at break of day.
-Psalm 46:1-5 (NIV)

Alright so it has been a while since I have written anything (due to some life changing events).  So I have decided, for the time being, that I will post something small every day. Perhaps a small scripture and a few thoughts.

So this scripture has been on my mind today due to some problems we have been having financially as cars are literally breaking down and as Murhpy has seemed to move into the house (Murphy’s Law roughly states that if anything can go wrong, it will go wrong.)!

So this scripture keeps coming to me. Also, while I have you, could you pray for God’s provisions and grace? Thanks and may God bless you!

Starting Fresh

Well it has been years since I have been on here writing (about 4). The reason it has been so long, is that I have been a senior pastor at a small church and now that God has shifted ministry opportunities away from that to other areas, I have felt a call to pick up my “pen” and write again.I believe this will be in spurts, to begin with (once a week etc.) as I am teaching as well.

What surprises me the most is that this site continues to receive visitors daily! Amazing! I have changed the design and I have to update my servers. So, if you find any links not working (pictures etc.) please e-mail me so I can get things fixed.

In Christ,
Rev. Joseph R. Kramer