Lawlessness

“Everyone who sins also commits lawlessness. Sin is lawlessness.”

The Apostle John is here clarifying what he means by being and staying pure and without the reign of sin in our life. Sin is basically rebellion against the person of God and His holy commandments. We do not want to know God or to enter into obedience to His Word. We are rebels and sinners, enemies of His holiness and bent of going our own way and doing our own thing. This is sin.

“Now the deeds of the flesh are obvious, which are: adultery, sexual immorality, uncleanness, lustfulness, idolatry, sorcery, hatred, strife, jealousies, outbursts of anger, rivalries, divisions, heresies, envy, murders, drunkenness, orgies, and things like these; of which I forewarn you, even as I also forewarned you, that those who practice such things will not inherit God’s Kingdom.”

Galatians 5:19-21

Sin is the desire to be free from all authority and restraint and to live libertarian lives to ourselves and our desires. It is the throwing off of all restraint and doing and saying whatever we want at any time we like. It is a hideous lawlessness, a complete turning ways from the legitimate authority of our loving God and Creator and wanting only self. Sin is the outworking of this lawlessness and justifies our own selfish inclinations and motivations. We are adept at it – born to it, but it doesn’t have to have the better of us. There is a way of escape from its deadly clutches.

We have a Saviour who can set us free and give us the powerful liberty of always doing the right thing and keeping the law of God. There is a power available to us so that we don’t have to always obey the voice of self, but can do what is right as God has laid down. We can know full forgiveness for every rotten thing we have ever thought, said or done, and have the freedom from the guilt that attends it all. Christ has died – what a glory and what a wonderful salvation to be possessed by us. Yet still, we may hear the gospel preached and offered to us and yet still cling to sin and self. It is so hard for us to break the chain, indeed we cannot. It binds us fast and holds us in hellish bondage to the inevitability of judgment and death. Only the power of God can free us. Only He can give the motivation to want to be rid of sin and lawlessness and follow God’s ways. Only God can give us the faith to believe and apply the cleansing of Christ to our souls. Only a loving Saviour can resurrect our soul and cause us to want God and want to be dealt with by Him.

“For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

Romans 6:23

Sin is a powerful disease in our life and we must have it demolished and defeated. The dwelling place of sin has to go and all its dreadful effects on our soul, mind and body. We must deal with our deep rooted lawlessness and humble ourselves before the cross and repent. Only then can we be free from it and able to draw near to our Father in heaven and have fellowship with Him. Then we will want His ways and hate our disobedience and sin. This is the work of God in a life and the most amazing miracle of grace.

“He who conceals his sins doesn’t prosper, but whoever confesses and renounces them finds mercy.”

Proverbs 28:13

This is the path of peace. The only thing that blocks our personal and daily walk with God is our sin. It doesn’t matter how big or small it is (human perspective) either grumbling internally about someone or shouting at your partner! It will ruin our communion with the father. We continually repent of it and walk in peace – not lawlessness.

Even as he is pure

“Everyone who has this hope set on him purifies himself, even as he is pure.”

If what we have talked about in the previous verse is true and the everlasting hope of the Christian believer, then the truth of it will have a massive impact on our thought processes and demeanour as followers of the Lord Jesus. If we have a certain hope of heaven then it will be a goal for the whole of our life.

My final state as a Christian will be perfection. One day, either in death or at the coming of the Lord, the Christian will be finally and forever changed into the perfect person they were redeemed to be. We are not perfect in this life, but strive to be, seeking to emulate the perfections of our Saviour, Jesus, and to be like Him. This is the mindset of the believer, to keep the commandments of the Lord and love Him unreservedly. We walk with God daily and keep in step with His will for our life which is to be holy and without blame in love.

“…because it is written, “You shall be holy; for I am holy.”

1 Peter 1:16

This is the aim of all our life and the purpose of our daily devotion to our Lord. Our hope is to reach the eternal kingdom and attain perfection because of what Christ has done for us. We can never attain it in our own efforts, yet as redeemed people we have the Holy Spirit living in us and He has a constant work of purifying us through teaching and constraining us to be obedient children of God.

“But the Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things, and will remind you of all that I said to you.”

John 14:26

We are also regarded as already perfect in Christ and this is why we can access the presence of God and daily walk with Him. Jesus has bought us for Himself and released us from death that we might walk in a new life with Him, a life of holiness and righteousness. This is the final destiny for sure, but also our purpose in this present life.

“For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared before that we would walk in them.”

Ephesians 2:10

If we are walking with our God and seeking to live righteous lives, then we have this hope of the future set on us. God will keep us in all our living for Him and bring us safely to the end of our life for His glory and our eternal good. God will never let us down or disappoint us, though we ourselves will fail, but our motivations will be to please the Lord and live in this great and certain hope. We will seek to be like Jesus in our character and behaviour and speak always with grace. We will pray that most dangerous of prayers… Lord, make me like you…

We will be like him

“Beloved, now we are children of God, and it is not yet revealed what we will be. But we know that, when he is revealed, we will be like him; for we will see him just as he is.”

The position of our salvation is affirmed. We are the children of God, part of the family of God and truly beloved. What a glorious estate to find oneself in! People who have been under the jackboot of sin and death and are now free from it. People who were under sentence of eternal rejection and to pay the just penalty for our sin, and are now utterly free. People who were destitute in every way, indeed in the position of grave debts to God and all are now forgiven and covered! Should we not rejoice?

The Scripture enjoins us to rejoice, every day and in all circumstances. The reason we don’t, is we forget and lose sight of our eternal position and the extreme blessings we possess in the Lord our God. We lose sight of the beauty of our Saviour and Lord and become too enamoured by the trivialities of this life. The fact remains, whatever our mindset today, we are children of God. 

Even though these blessed truths are revealed to us in the Scripture, there is so much more that is kept from us. We are more than we think we are. We are the very inheritors of the throne of God the sisters and brothers of the King of Kings and the equal family members of the ruler of the Universe, and yet there is more! 

We cannot conceive of what that might be and so it is kept from us until we enter into our inheritance in heaven, in the coming kingdom. We will one day be full of realisation of what has been done for us, bought for us and such a price. We will see anew the love of Christ for us as His people and be amazed again and again…

We will inherit all things, but best of all we will be like our beloved Saviour, for we shall see Him as He is. We will suddenly and completely understand our position in the everlasting pecking order beside our dear Lord and will serve Him with every fibre of our being. What will we be like in heaven? What state will our bodies be in? What age will we be as everlasting souls to God? 

Our bodies will be glorified and enter a state where they cannot die. There will be no need of food systems, sewage systems, health systems, business systems, or any earthy institution, only grace and love and LIFE! Life will bloom out of everything we do and everything will bring glory to us and the Lord. We will finally serve Him with great and perfect love and devotion with clean hearts, minds, bodies and souls. All the remnants of sin will be gone. All the spectres of death that haunt us will finally be put to rest. There will be no churches or graveyards, but only living mansions to the grace of God. 

We will be like JESUS. We will live in heaven at the peak of our human vitality and life. Probably in the flower of mid-age, the age that our Lord Jesus laid down His life for us. The presence of Him will be everywhere and with us at all times. We will never be lonely or left to our own devices ever again, for His delightful presence will be always with us. We will have free direct access to him, spiritual Him and physical Him. What a joy to be his blessed bride and live with Him forever! We will receive our hearts desire, to shed the life of sin and enter the life of Jesus and ever be equal to His love. 

We will see Him who our soul loves and who is the lover of our soul. We will

be fully satisfied with Him and ever live in his embrace. The longing will be finally over and we will see Him face to face and see the effects of all He has done for us. 

“They will see his face, and his name will be on their foreheads.”

Revelation 22:4

We will love and live the imprint of His character on our souls and we will recognise Him in each other, knowing the family resemblance to our Saviour. It will be the pinnacle of our searching and longing in this foolish world and our sight of it should lift us out of the here and now and cause us to rejoice in our inheritance.

“… to an incorruptible and undefiled inheritance that doesn’t fade away, reserved in Heaven for you…”

1 Peter 1:4

So, beloved, let us lift our hearts and voices to Him everyday and be exultant at what is ahead for us. Let us not be bowed down at our failures and afflictions, but praise our Lord with souls, minds and lift holy hands to Him. Let us rejoice to labour to be like Him in this world and show the people around us what He is really like. Let us seek his likeness and throw off every encumbrance that would keep us from it…

How great love

“See how great a love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God! For this cause the world doesn’t know us, because it didn’t know him.”

We can now clearly see from the argument and rationality in the last chapter, chapter two, that the love God has for His children is astronomical! God has set His heart on this almost limitless multitude to bring them to a full and free salvation. He has given His love freely to an undeserving people, who He has saved from the ignominy of this trivial life and brought us into the kingdom of God. His love has transformed our life and set us free from the straightjacket of sin and it’s hellish consequences and made us free in the liberty of Christ.

“Stand firm therefore in the liberty by which Christ has made us free, and don’t be entangled again with a yoke of bondage.”

Galatians 5:1

We now stand as redeemed people, bought with the most precious commodity, the blood of Christ, and given an eternal status with the daughters and sons of God. We now belong in the royal family of heaven and are heirs of God with Christ. We enjoy the eternal life now in our resurrected souls and can know triumphant life over the sin and fleshly desires that still cling to us, but do not need to have the victory over us!

We will reign with Christ as His beloved people in the kingdom to come, for we are family now. Such is the amazing love of God that He can take rebellious people and make them daughters and sons of the kingdom. We are now spiritual beings and as such, we crucify the flesh and live lives to God daily. We do not follow the motivations of this world nor its godless mindset, but put on Christ as our daily portion.

“But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, for its lusts.”

Romans 13:14

It this regard, the people who remain without spiritual life will not recognise us, regard us or necessarily include us. The people who are tuned into this world’s programme will not be able to relate to the love, joy and peace that we now possess, for they do not know peace with God. They will not know us because they do not know the Lord. They are outsiders to the Lord and therefore insensible to His presence and power. We glorify the Lord for His great love in loving us and rescuing us and we do not complain about the lack of understanding of unbelievers, but always seek to bring them into the kingdom also. We spread the love of God and make Him known.

Without God’s love in salvation we remain lost people and unfamiliar with the Lord and therefore outside His kingdom. Beloved, seek the love of God and you will be amazed at His grace and goodness and how He can change you and make you like Him. What a blessing to be part of His family with a future that is secure in Christ.

He is righteous

“If you know that he is righteous, you know that everyone who practices righteousness is born of him.”

It stands to reason that if the Lord our God is a righteous God, then His standard is righteousness. There is no room for sin or ungodly ways as we stand before a righteous God. The righteousness in His character precludes any sin, any sin at all. God’s standard is holiness, perfection, and a complete absence of sinfulness or unrighteousness. We all stand before Him already condemned because we are unrighteous beings and we practice our nature naturally and without thought. Something has to happen to us to enable us to stand before the Lord our God. We must shed the sinful nature and gain righteousness. We can do neither by ourselves but depend on the Lord to provide for us and cover all our sin and shame.

This He did in Christ. Jesus has borne the penalty for us and paid for our sin and by confession and repentance it is washed away. We also gain the merits of the righteousness of our Saviour and are actually made righteous people because of what he did in His life and death. Jesus lived a perfect life of righteousness to be our worthy Saviour and so that His goodness could be recompensed to us. He died so that sin could be paid for and the guilt and shame could be washed away through His shed blood.

It is logical that those who live righteous lives are demonstrating that they love the Lord and belong to Him. If we have experienced this great change in our spiritual status, we will be completely different people and will want different things than we used to when we walked in sinfulness. We will want to be like our Lord because our hearts are now soft to Him and our souls alive to His salvation.

“For in it is revealed God’s righteousness from faith to faith. As it is written, “But the righteous shall live by faith.”

Romans 1:17

The righteousness that is required of us is the righteousness of faith. As we put our trust and hope in the sacrifice Jesus made for us, we are counted as righteous. This is a transaction only God can make to convert a corrupt nature into one that He sees as righteous. Like Abraham we are regarded as righteous because of our faith. We can take no credit for any part of this transaction, for it is all by the mercy of God. The fact that we seek Him, our righteous God and seek to be righteous people, is a miracle of God in our mind and heart. The very faith we exercise is from Him and surely salvation is of the Lord. We will therefore practice righteousness and live a life that is pleasing to the Lord.

We may have boldness

“Now, little children, remain in him, that when he appears, we may have boldness, and not be ashamed before him at his coming.”

It seems to be a possibility that there will be believers in Christ who will suffer some embarrassment at His glorious return to fully bring in the kingdom of God. We are again remonstrated with to remain in good standing with the Lord. We are again reminded that we are but little children, waiting on the good pleasure of a beloved Father in heaven. The relationship could not be warmer and the closeness of our walk with God brings Him and us daily delight. We are finished with sin and walk in the light of the Word as our daily devotion to our Lord and God. We wish to please the Lord and do nothing out of bad motives or attitudes, but to obey His loving commandments, given for our strength and goodness.

Yet, there is this situation where some of the children of God will not be living their holy lives when He returns for them and therefore they will suffer some loss, some embarrassment and a feeling of shame that they are not quite what they should be. The Scripture does speak of some who will be saved by the smallest of margins or by the skin of their teeth.

“If any man’s work is burned, he will suffer loss, but he himself will be saved, but as through fire.”

1 Corinthians 3:15

This Scripture indicates that there will be those who are saved from the consequences of sin and hell, but will suffer the loss of work done for God, which is not sanctified to Him. The loss of a life not lived with right motives or close attention to the details of the commandments. These Christians will have nothing to present to their Lord and no works of goodness that are good enough for His glory, indeed we’re not carried out for His glory but only self. We must remain in the doctrines of the faith and stay away from things that lead us into error, heresy or disobedience to the Lord.

We need to remain faithful to the commandments no matter what it costs us in this life, that we may gain an inheritance in the coming kingdom that will not fade away or be destroyed by the refiners fire.

It would not be good to be found living an unholy life when the Lord returns for us, so we keep ourselves in the love of God and be always conscious of that coming day, which will happen soon. How wonderful to be found ready for the Bridegroom, the Lord Jesus Christ, who is surely coming for His bride – the people of God. What joy we will experience to be waiting for Him in such hope and expectation every day. How close we would be to His heart and what power we would have to overcome the trials of life.

Beloved, let us not be found wanting, but full of love, faith and hope as we wait for our coming King. As we live for Him we will experience a life of holy boldness lived for the glory of Jesus or Lord. When we hear the trumpet sound that will herald His return, we will be glad and rise to meet Him in the air with courage and great joy.

Concerning all things

“As for you, the anointing which you received from him remains in you, and you don’t need for anyone to teach you. But as his anointing teaches you concerning all things, and is true, and is no lie, and even as it taught you, you will remain in him.”

We receive the anointing of the Holy Spirit at our conversion. We cannot call ourselves Christians without the indwelling of the Holy Spirit in our life. The anointing is real for every Christian believer and the presence of the Spirit gives us discernment and discretion in the things of God. The Spirit does not lead us astray but always into all truth. We are bound to keep our lives pure so that the work of the Spirit is not contaminated by our sinful desire, attitudes and bad behaviour. It is easy to grieve His precious work in our life by our remiss attitudes.

We can depend on the Lord to always lead us in the right way and give us good judgment, and we earnestly seek His wisdom and courage. We seek wisdom from the Word of God and it is our daily responsibility to search the Scriptures to know truth and to live by it. The courage comes with the working of the Spirit within us to stand for Christ and turn our backs on our own ideas about how things are or should be, as follow His way.

“But for the cowardly, unbelieving, sinners, abominable, murderers, sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars, their part is in the lake that burns with fire and sulfur, which is the second death.”

Revelation 21:8

We will not believe lies if we are walking in this way and will be daily taught by the Lord through His Word. We will not be afraid to speak or be known for Jesus if we are walking closely with Him. Let us not be in this list of abominable souls who are found wanting at the end and are cast out. The Holy Spirit will keep us from all evil and give us courage in all the adversity we face. He will never leave us, though others might, and will be faithful to us right through our Christian life and make us victorious over all ills. This is an anointing worth having, for it lifts us up out of the humdrum and put our feet on a rock that is safe and secure, even the Word of God and our Saviour Jesus.

Let us not give our strength and spiritual abilities to so-called teachers and preachers who will tell you what to think and do, and many will lead you astray and into bondage, but let us stand fast in the liberty of Christ. Let us use our discernment to know who to listen to and who to give our attention to. We never stop thinking or allow our minds to atrophy into quiet acquiescence and acceptance of any sect or demonination. We stay fresh and green in the power of the Spirit of God who dwells in us and is our teacher, minister, guide, comforter and the one who convicts of sin. He makes our bodies His temple and makes us children of the living God.

Beloved, do not be led away from truth and true spiritual life by dead orthodoxy or rampant worldliness, but cling to the truths of God as you find them taught in the Old and New Testaments. They will never lead us astray and the Holy Spirit within will testify to our hearts that we belong to God. This is also our Christian assurance and true and living hope for the future. We rejoice in the Spirit with all expressions of love and joy and peace. Let us live in the light of God and remain in our Lord Jesus Christ.

“Remain in me, and I in you. As the branch can’t bear fruit by itself, unless it remains in the vine, so neither can you, unless you remain in me.”

John 15:4

Revelation

This book will comfort you and not distress you about the future times that are coming soon. Revelation was written for the comfort and admonition of the saints of God and not as a sensationalistic piece of literature. It is a vision and full of symbolism, which is hard to decipher. God relates to us His plan for the gospel and the salvation of souls and not just an almanac about the coming end times.

These times are coming soon and the Lord stands at the threshold of the door. We must be ready, like the wise virgins at the wedding feast.

This book is not pre-millennialists in stance, but the obvious truth that Christ will come and the end with Him. The coming kingdom is almost here- let us rejoice in the Lord at His deliverance.

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Search: Shirley Hamilton Revelation

Lead you astray

“These things I have written to you concerning those who would lead you astray.”

The Apostle teaches the Christians the truths of God that they are forever safe in Christ to protect them for those who would upset their faith and weaken their grip on the Lord Jesus. He is warning them against the hurt that will be inflicted on their souls by the deceit and depravity of those who seek to change and twist the Word of God. He speaks of weighty matters that many don’t really care about, but are fundamental to our view of Christ and the reality of our faith in Him.

Maybe we see it as boring to repeat the warnings and teach and reteach the truths, but we are talking about our inner selves, our souls, which will be lost if we are not believing the truth.

We guard our hearts.

“Keep your heart with all diligence, for out of it is the wellspring of life.”

Proverbs 4:23

Our hearts or our souls relate to God, so it is crucial that we guard against the error that would cause us to move from total trust in Jesus our Lord, to looking to other entertainments to give us a “spiritual feeling.” We relate to God in faith, for this is what pleases Him and will bring us safely to heaven. There is no other remedy for sin or sorrow, but through the love of Christ.

The promise

“And this is the promise that He Himself made to us: eternal life.”

This knowing God and remaining faithful to the end of our life, is the essence of eternal life. It is a gift from God that we cannot earn and cannot lose. The promise of eternal life is a gift given when we repent of our sin and put out trust in the Saviour Jesus and all that He has done for us.

The gift is free to us, given from the deepest heart of love from our Father God, but it was not free to Him. Sin is a very serious moral disease and God cannot and will not overlook it. God is holy and will never tolerate any sin. He cannot for His perfections know that that disease ruins everything. We do not easily appreciate that because we are evil and our hearts are used to the sins we commit and we are hardened to their evil. Every sin must be paid for, because God is just and will exercise that justice in every human life. This is why the dreadful place of hell exists, that sin is atoned for. We will all pay for our own sin because we are all responsible for it.

“I tell you that every idle word that men speak, they will give account of it in the day of judgment.”

Matthew 12:36

Yet, in His great and tender mercy towards us, God has provided a way of escape from the consequences of our sin and has given us a Saviour, His very own Son, to pay that terrible price for us. The good news of the gospel is that it is all paid for and by trusting in that sacrifice of Jesus, we can be free from it. The joy that brings the believer is huge. A great weight is lifted from us and we are given the gift of eternal life. This means the Holy Spirit comes to dwell in us forever and will teach us and make us the people we are supposed to be. We get to commune with God in prayer and have His daily provision and protection from the sin that easily infests us. He protects us from all evil, even the evil in our own hearts, and gives us the ability to obey Him and keep His commandments.

“In this is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son as the atoning sacrifice for our sins.”

1 John 4:10

This quality of life lasts and will keep us in God’s love right to the end of our lives and into eternity. What a joy to be free to relate to our loving Father and to walk every day in the company off the Lord Jesus Christ in the power and victory of the Holy Spirit. This is the destiny of all who will simply accept the free gift and turn from sin.

This is the delight of every believer, that they can rejoice every day in all circumstances that they are destined for heaven’s glory because of their Lord and Saviour. We love Him and enter into the reality of that love as we possess the eternal life that He has given us. To walk in the love of God is eternal life and full of joy. It lasts forever because God’s promise is true and can never be broken.