Tuesday, July 28, 2020

Welcome

August is now posted.


We will be posting the Glorious Gospel articles individually below. A PDF file (large print) can be downloaded under the Archives tab and printed if desired, as well as past editions.

There is audio from Grace Assembly Church services.

ESCAPEES

Part 3


Jack Davis


“But the angel of the Lord by night opened the prison doors, and brought them forth, and said, Go, stand and speak in the temple to the people all the words of this life” – Acts 5:19-20.

These prisoners had been told not to speak any more in the name of Jesus. The high priest and all that were with him had been stirred to indignation by the multitudes of believers being added unto the Lord, and a multitude of the sick being healed. They hoped to put a stop to these marvelous works by threatening, and then by putting them into prison.

Praise God the angel of the Lord brought them forth. They were given the good occupation of all the Lord’s escapees to go, stand and speak the wonderful words of life. Thank God, we have been set free, and we also have the God-given liberty to boldly do the will of God in our lives, even in the face of threatening bondage.

These escapees hadn’t taken the easy way out, but endangered their lives by obeying the higher command. V. 29, “Then Peter and the other apostles answered and said, We ought to obey God rather than men.” Having left the prison, they entered into the temple early in the morning, and taught. But when the high priest came, they sent to the prison to have them brought, and they found them not. They found the guards doing their job well, except for the fact they were guarding an empty cell. Let our adversaries’ men always be kept busy guarding an empty prison.

In a later prison break, we read of Peter being taken prisoner by king Herod. “Peter therefore was kept in prison; but prayer was made without ceasing of the church of God for him. And when Herod would have brought him forth, the same night Peter was sleeping between two soldiers, bound with two chains: and the keepers before the door kept the prison. And, behold, the angel of the Lord came upon him, and a light shined in the prison: and he smote Peter on the side, and raised him up, saying, Arise up quickly. And his chains fell off from his hands. And the angel said unto him, Gird thyself, and bind on thy sandals.  And so he did. And he saith unto him, Cast thy garment about thee, and follow me” – Acts 12:5-8.

The things that happened to Peter here may remind us of our experiences in various types of prisons. He seems to manifest great peace, an overcoming attitude in a very uncomfortable situation. I believe he got more rest than the two men chained to him. Oh, how we thank God for the light that was commanded to shine into our prison, to alert us of our liberty in Christ, and the truth that makes men free. He sometimes has to smite or shake us to make the chains fall off. It is also amazing the way He prepares us to move out in His will. In order to fully follow Him in His perfect will, we need our loins girt about with truth, our feet shod with the preparation of the  Gospel of peace, and be experimentally wrapped in the robe of His righteousness. We then may also declare, as Peter “declared unto them how the Lord had brought him out of the prison” – Acts 12:17.

Now as Paul and his companions went to prayer, a soothsaying slave girl agitated them many days. When Paul commanded the evil spirit to come out of her, it stirred up the wrath of those making profit from her acts. Then they caught Paul and Silas, and brought them to the magistrates, and stirred up the multitude against them. “And when they had laid many stripes upon them, they cast them into prison, charging the jailer to keep them safely. Who having received such a charge, thrust them into the inner prison, and made their feet fast in stocks. And at midnight Paul and Silas prayed, and sang praises unto God; and the prisoners heard them” - Acts 16:23-25.

This event is such a wonderful testimony of victory even if the record ended right there. At midnight, in stocks, and with many stripes is not usually considered the most ideal time for praying and singing praises, but oh, thank God this is when the prisoners heard them. I am glad that God also still produces the same attitude and actions today in those who in their darkest trying hour completely trust Him. Sometimes we also are prisoners for Christ sake, that other prisoners may hear the joyful sound in the darkest places. Yet we certainly rejoice that the earth did quake, and the foundations of the prison shake, and opened the doors and loosed the bands.  We greatly rejoice in the liberating of the prison keeper and his household. Thank God that we today who are constrained by love divine, are still able to encourage “prisoners of hope” to always “turn to the strong hold” of our faith. Zec. 9:12.

While Jeremiah was shut up in the court of the prison, the Word of the Lord was sent to encourage him to “call unto me, and I will answer thee, and shew thee great and mighty things, which thou knowest not” – Jer. 33:3. The prison for Jeremiah was, even though dark, damp and gloomy a sweet place of communication and revelation. A place to listen and to speak to the Lord. Yet I doubt if he complained when he got out.

SECRET ESCAPES
It seems that the escapes we experience as we go on farther with the Lord, become more and more intricate. They aren’t always easily expressed or explained. They are not things that the flesh would boast in. II Cor. 11:30,32-33, If I must needs glory, I will glory in the things which concern mine infirmities. In Damascus the governor under Aretas the king kept the city of the Damascenes with a garrison, desirous to apprehend me. And through a window in a basket was I let down by the wall, and escaped his hands.”

At this time Paul provably escaped the edge of the sword, but how many of us would proudly tell how? We might be prone to tell it like this concerning the window. ‘The Lord just opened the windows of heaven and swept my through.’ In place of a basket, we would rather say a chariot of fire whisked me out of his grasp in the neck of time. When we would tell of the wall, who would tell that it just fell down flat and I walked over it, or better yet I walked right through it. Was not this a glorious deliverance for the man chosen to be the chief apostle of the church? Paul had to say I escaped by being let down. He was let down by the brethren. Has the Lord ever provided you such an escape? The names of those gracious saints who held the robe are not mentioned, but I am sure God has it on record. God had placed Paul’s life in their hands.

After this escape, Paul was “caught up,” II Cor. 12:2,4. He then was caused to behold glorious things that he could not talk about. Because of what he saw, he was turned down, in his request for removal of a thorn. He was turned down to escape being lifted up. Our Father always provides a way of escape for us, from captivity to carnal pride. He resist the proud and gives grace to the humble. He has provided for our freedom from the influence of the world, the devil and the flesh, wherein dwelleth no good thing.

There is coming so very soon that great escape, let us be ever and always expectant of it. “For the Lord Himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and the trump of God: and the dead shall rise first: Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord” – I Thess. 4:16-17.

GOD’S WORK IN US


Anita Clark – Pastor – Carbondale, KS


The example used in the Old Testament of the “Potter and the clay” is especially illustrative of God’s marvelous work in the hearts and lives of His people, whether Israel or the believers of the Church today.  Isaiah. 64:8 says, “But now O LORD, Thou art the Potter, and we are the work of Thy hand.” God, Creator made man from the dust of the ground.  Genesis 2:7 says, “And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul.”  The word “formed” is a word that means “to mold into form especially as a potter.” 

In Jeremiah 18:1-6, the prophet was told to go down to the potter’s house, and God was going to cause him to hear His words.  We too can hear the words of the Lord through the illustration of the Potter and the Clay.  Notice verse 3, “Then, I went down to the potter’s house, and, behold He wrought a work on the wheel.”  Just as God molded Adam out of the dust of the earth, God works in all His children.  In this particular Scripture, God is speaking of His work on Israel at that time.  Notice verse 4, “And the vessel that He made of clay was marred in the hand of the potter; so He made it again another vessel, as seemed good to the potter to make it.”  This verse though written of Israel is applicable to believers today.  God is working a divine work in each of our lives.

In Romans 9:20, Apostle Paul says, “Nay but, O man, who art thou that repliest against God? Shall the thing formed say to Him that formed it, Why hast thou made me thus?  Hath not the potter power over the clay, of the same lump to make one vessel unto honour, and another unto dishonor.” We are the vessels that God has formed.  Some may have a more honorable place in the Church than others, but God is in control, and calls some to one ministry and others to something else.  We have to learn that God is the Potter, and He is bringing about through His skilled hand as the Master Potter His own divine will. He has the power over the clay. We should not question the work of God in our lives.

Isaiah 45:9 speaks of the “potsherds” striving with the Maker (God). This is speaking of Israel who was as broken pot (just broken pieces - potsherds) at the time of this prophecy, but we can also apply this verse to ourselves.  We should not “strive with our Maker,” questioning His work in our lives, saying, “God are you sure you know what you are doing?” We are often a helpless, broken pot.  A song says, “He is the Potter, We are the clay, Mold me and make me, this is what I say. Change my heart, O God...Make me just like You.”

The Potter, our Maker, is working in us to change us into His own image.  When a Potter begins to work with the clay, the first thing he does is to work the air bubbles out.  This is called “wedging.” This takes some time in the Potter’s hands, and the clay is still a glob, but pliable in the Master’s hands.  Next comes the molding or shaping of the clay, which either is done on a wheel or just by coiling the clay to make whatever it is that the Master wants to make.  The clay is kept moist by the Potter using water as he works.  The Master’s hands are always holding the clay and working with the clay.  When the desired shape is produced, the Master fires the clay.  Without firing, the clay pot will never be usable.  The firing is at very high temperature in a kiln, the oven that will bring forth a usable pot.  After the firing then comes the staining or painting.  This is where the beauty comes to the pot. Then, the pot must be fired again to perfect the staining. Of course there are many different kinds of pots, some beautiful, just to display on a shelf, but others which are more practical and useful. Think about this and realize why God used this illustration of “The Potter and the clay.”

How does God work in our lives, as the Potter of the clay?  Apostle Paul exhorts in I Thessalonians 2:12-13- “That ye would walk worthy of God, Who hath called you into His kingdom and glory.  For this cause also thank we God without ceasing, because, when ye received the Word of God which ye heard of us, ye received it not as the word of men, but as it is in truth, the word of God, which effectually worketh also in you that believe.”  As we take in the Word of God, it does a work in us, as the Potter does His work with the clay, an “effectual work,” which in the Gk. Means, an “active, fervent and mighty” work.  Ephesians 4:16 speaks of this “effectual work.” which brings “...increase of the body unto the edifying of itself in love.” The Potter knows exactly what He is doing.

In Ephesians 3:20, Paul speaks of “...the power that worketh in us.”  This is the Holy Spirit power that the Potter uses to transform us into Christ’s image.  Philippians 2:13 says, “For it is God which worketh in you, both to will (to determine) and to do of His good pleasure.”  God uses many things to shape us and mold us into the image of Christ.  “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them that are the called according to His purpose” (Romans 8:28).

 “For which cause we faint not; but though our outward man perish, yet the inward man is renewed day by day. For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory, While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal: but the things which are not seen are eternal.” (II Cor. 4:16-18).

Ephesians 1:11 tells us, “...according to the purpose of Him Who worketh all things after the counsel of His own will.”  There is no one who is all knowing and all powerful as God.  Verse 19 speaks of the “exceeding greatness of His mighty power to usward who believe, according to the working of His mighty power.”

Philippians 3:21 says, “Who shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto His glorious body, according to the working whereby He is able to subdue all things unto Himself.” Note the word, “working” which in the Gk. Means “efficiency (energy) operation or the effectual working.”  How can a believer expect to be changed into the likeness of Jesus Christ?  The Potter is on the job.  Praise God!  He is the power that works in us to giving us the ability and strength required to be an overcomer, changed into the likeness of the Lord Jesus Christ.  Praise the Lord!

What Is That To You?



Jesus saith unto him, If I will that he tarry till I come, what is that to thee? follow thou me. John 21:22

Jesus has always been calling to a personal relationship. He called each of His disciples to follow Him at the beginning of His ministry, and now He calls each one of us to follow Him.

We live in a culture where people are constantly looking to others, and to the group to determine what they should or shouldn’t do. The “group” decides what is right and wrong. Everything is determined by the consensus of the majority, or even sometimes by the very vocal minority.

This article is not about politics, even though this same phenomenon occurs there as well. I want to consider carefully our individual lives, and in particular as it relates to our relationship with Jesus. Who determines what that relationship is to be like? Who determines where that relationship carries you? Who is in control of that relationship?

I can see that I will get into some trouble here. We live in a culture that values individual rights and individual power over ones own life. However, when we enter a relationship with Jesus, we will need to cede that right and power to Him. The relationship will never flourish and deepen if we are set on being the one that establishes the boundaries and the direction of the relationship.

I also want to note that as Jesus called more disciples, He did not say “follow us,” He always says follow me. When Paul says in 1 Corinthians 11:1, he makes sure to qualify it “as I follow Christ.” He is inviting us to follow Christ just as he does. We can read more about Paul’s relationship with Jesus in the third chapter of Philippians.

A couple of months back, I wrote about walking with Jesus. I noted that He approached the two men on the road to Emmaus, and walked with them. That is personal.

Consider Philippians 2:12 “Wherefore, my beloved, as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out  your own salvation with fear and trembling.” This verse is not about doing works to stay saved. It is about each individual and their relationship to the Savior.

We don’t need a group decision on what is right or wrong, God’s Word provides that. We don’t need a group decision on what path we should be taking, we need to walk with our Lord in very close communion. So many of God’s precious people are following whatever the latest worldly fad is, and have no real relationship with their Lord.

I don’t want this to sound like we don’t need each other in the body of Christ, but our fellowship as an assembly of God’s people is directly related to each individual’s relationship to Jesus. Our fellowship with Him will determine our fellowship with one another.

Saints, it is so late now. in Romans 13:11-12, Paul says the night is far spent and that we should wake up. I can’t say it strongly enough. Time is short. This age is coming to an end. You cannot and will not take anything from here, except your relationship with Jesus. Please make it the preeminent thing in your life.

Gordon Crook

Prophecy 


Earlene Davis

AFTER TRIBULATION


Matthew 24:29, “Immediately after the tribulation of those days shall the sun be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken:” There will be a terrible upheaval in the heavens. Rev. 16:8-10, the sun will scorch the unbelievers. The sun is a star and when a star burns out it gets hotter and burn itself out. It is possible this is what will happen to the sun. Anyway terrible things will happen. See Rev. 6:12-13.

Mt. 24:30, “And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.” This is the sign the disciples asked for (V. 3). The Son of man once crucified, coming to deliver His people. He is the sign. “All the tribes” refer to the 12 tribes of Israel. They shall see Him with their physical eyes, a real man of flesh and bones, they shall mourn in repentance and receive their Messiah – Zech. 12:9-14. “The clouds of heaven” are the heavenly hosts of saints accompanying him. In Heb. 12:1, they are called a cloud of witnesses. In Rev. 19:14, they are called the armies in heaven. He comes “with power and great glory” with His heavenly saints (see I Thes. 3:13 & Jude 14). Rev. 19:11-13,15-16 gives a good description of this.

V. 31, “And he shall send his angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.” Israel will be gathered where they have been scattered – Dan. 9:7. Angels simply means messengers, redeemed glorified men shall call them back to God with a great sound of a trumpet (trumpeting God’s Word). Just as Joseph was moved in love for his brethren when he revealed himself to them; so Christ will yearn over His people. He will view them as (a new creation) in their homeland, no more to roam. Dan. 12:12, Blessed is he that cometh to that time.

Vs. 32-33, “Now learn a parable of the fig tree; When his branch is yet tender, and putteth forth leaves, ye know that summer is nigh: So likewise ye, when ye shall see all these things, know that it is near, even at the doors.” Christ gives another sign of this coming to pass. The fig tree is likened unto the nation Israel in Hos. 9:10; Isa. 5:1; 6:9-13. Remember when Jesus entered Jerusalem (called His triumphant entry), the next morning outside the city was a fig tree and didn’t have any fruit on it. It had leaves only. Jesus cursed it and the disciples marveled because it dried up immediately. It represented Israel, not bearing fruit, only leaves which figures just a profession. That is how Jesus found them at His first advent. Now we see the nation Israel, yet tender and putting forth some leaves. It is a sign that Israel’s spiritual restoration is near. Afterwards they will get fruit, when they accept their Messiah. “When ye see these things, know that it is near, even at the door.” We have a door, open in heaven, Israel will have a door open on earth.

V. 34, “Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled.” I believe this means, the generation when Israel begins to put forth its leaves. Israel became a nation in 1948, but scripture also tell us that God changes the times and seasons. He can lengthen days or shorten them (Dan. 2:21 & Mt. 24:22), but this promise shall be fulfilled.

Vs. 35-36, “Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my words shall not pass away (compare II Pet. 3:10; I Pet. 1:25; Heb. 1:10-12; Rev 21:1,5). But of that day and hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels of heaven, but my Father only.” At that time Jesus was a man on the earth speaking, but now as God, I think He knows, for God knows all things.

Continued next issue: Christ coming to the earth

JONAH


Debra Isenbletter, Pastor
Springfield, Missouri


Vs 9: “And he said unto them, I am a Hebrew, and I fear the Lord, the God of heaven, which hath made the sea and the dry land.”

Jonah when questioned gives an answer, he states Who he is: “I am a Hebrew” and he states Who he worships: “and I fear the Lord;” then he states Who God is: The God of Heaven: the God of Creation: “which hath made the sea and the dry land.” He describes God in two ways these pagan Gentiles can understand and identify with. Jonah doesn’t answer each of their questions specifically, he focuses on these basic truths.

Jonah does “answer” and in that answer to both “declares” and “certifies” that what he says is the truth. Jonah answers those who questioned him, the captain and the sailors. I am struck by, that Jonah is forced answer by circumstances, by lot and by examination.  There should be a willing, eager boldness to testify. The Psalmist wrote: “I will speak of thy testimonies before kings, and will not be ashamed” (Psa.119:46). I don’t believe Jonah was ashamed but he did not go out of his way to testify about the Lord, but he did not jump at the chance. Remember he was reluctant to go to Nineveh, so there was a reluctance to testify to Gentiles. We have such wonderful examples of those, who when questioned, do not hesitate, who boldly give an answer.  John the Baptist did this when questioned about who he was. (John 1:22-33). Jesus did this when questioned by John the Baptist’s disciples. (John 11:2-5). Paul did this throughout his ministry and missionary journeys and at his trial in Jerusalem. The Lord Jesus said the Holy Spirit will shows us what to say and Peter says that we should “be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you” (I Pet. 3:15). Peter does point out that we need to sanctify the Lord in our hearts first before doing this, and that when doing this we do it with meekness.

Jonah his answer with Who he is: “I am a Hebrew.” Essentially, he is identifying himself with the people of the Lord’s covenant, with Abraham, and he does not seem to be ashamed. “Hebrew” is from “beer,” an Eberite (i.e. Hebrew)—(Strong’s), When you trace the lineage of Shem (Gen.11:10-26), you see that Eber is the great grandson of Shem and from Eber comes Nahor, Terah and Abram. “Hebrew” means “one that passes over” (Hitchcock) or “beyond; the other side of (as having crossed over” (JB Jackson). Others suggest it is a variation of another Hebrew word (abhor) which speaks of a “sojourner” or “passer through.” Jonah was from a line of descendants culminating in one man called by the Lord, to whom the Lord revealed Himself and to whom the Lord made a covenant with and it was a covenant of grace. Jonah was from a proud lineage. He does not tell them where he was born, or what tribe he is from. In his answer we do not see the divisions of the nation, the split between the 2 tribes and 10 tribes. Jonah is a “Hebrew,” he is a “stranger and pilgrim on the earth” (Heb.11:13) and he feels his separation, and that separation comes from his calling.

Jonah continues with Who he worships: “I fear the Lord” or “and I [reverently] fear and worship the Lord.” (Amplified). The word “fear” shows two emotions connected with his relationship with God, submission and worship. There is a “fear” that speaks of being afraid and Jonah must have felt fear at this moment because of the terrible storm. That fear brings a submission to God.  There is a “fear” that means “stand in awe of” and that speaks of “worship.” The one that Jonah fears is the “Lord”—the “self-existent one who reveals himself.” The Lord had revealed Himself to Jonah in the past and now in the present and now Jonah is about to reveal the Lord to these men. 

Jonah says that he fears the Lord, but where was that fear while he was running from the Lord? It seems like he learns to fear the Lord only after judgment. Fear when it is balanced with Faith makes all the difference.  When he disobeyed and when he fled he did not show that “fear the Lord.” Now Jonah learns again to submit to God and to worship God. Fear brings knowledge. The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge” (Prov.1:7). Knowledge is the starting point, it is a beginning, it must grow and develop, it comes through experience. It is what helps us accept instruction and correction and not resist. Fear brings wisdom. “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom: and knowledge of the holy is understanding.” (Prov.9:10). This shows that knowledge and wisdom are linked together. Wisdom is knowledge that has grown and this is what helps us understand God’s Will. Fear brings obedience. “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom: a good understanding have all they that do his commandments” (Psa.111:10). Wisdom grows as we accept God’s Will, and when we accept then we obey God’s Will. As Jonah says this I can see the reality of what he has said all his life suddenly being made real and fresh again.  Sometimes trials and tests and even failures show us how precious those truths are that we have known all our lives. Now Jonah’s testimony will cause these men to both fear and worship the Lord.

Jonah tells them Who God is. He is the God of Heaven and the God of Creation. Jonah introduces them to God in two ways that they can understand.

The God of Heaven: Psalm 136 describes the God of heaven by declaring that He is ruler over heaven and earth. He is the “God of gods” and He is the “Lord of lords.” What is so striking in this Psalm is that throughout the many descriptions of God runs the phrase “His mercy endureth forever” which shows His great attribute is His Mercy. It is His mercy that the sailors will see and His mercy that Jonah will see after he is thrown overboard. It is understandable that the Jews would see God in this way and address God in this way, Nehemiah prayed to “the God of heaven” (Neh.1:4) and Daniel prayed to “the God of heaven” (Dan.2:17-18).  But when the Gentiles see God in this way it is remarkable. Cyrus, the king of Persian acknowledged “the God of heaven” as directing or charging him to build God a house in Jerusalem (Ezra 1:2). Nebuchadnezzar acknowledge God as the “King of heaven” (Dan.4:17) after he had been abased as he said for his pride. Now these sailors who believed in other gods will see “the God of heaven” in a marvelous way and will surely know that He is greater than all their gods.

He is the God of Creation: “which hath made the sea and the dry land.”  Every culture had creation stories and understood that there was a Creator. They are sailors on the sea, the sea is in terrible turmoil, they are about to die and they want to get back on dry land. This is a view of God they can understand and Jonah begins with the “sea” to reinforce this message. God created the sea, God created the “great wind” and directed it. As He started it, He can also stop it. Underneath these two statements is the fact that Jonah’s God is the God of all men, not just Jonah or the Jews. This is how Paul introduced God when he preached at Lystra, he preached the “living God” as opposed to dead idols, he preached the God “which made heaven and earth and the sea.” (Acts 14:15). When Paul was in Athens and preached on Mars Hill, he pointed out their altar to an “unknown God” and then told them this was the same God that “made the world and all things therein” and that He was “Lord of heaven and earth” (Acts.17:23-24).  Jonah does not speak very long, does not even say very much but what he says is powerful and will have a profound effect upon those listening. They do not disbelieve him, they believe him. Jonah, the reluctant prophet is fulfilling his ministry and his calling. He must have seen their reaction, because they certainly had one as the next verse shows. I think that whether Jonah realizes it or not, this is the Lord showing him that Gentiles can respond to his message. It is a picture of what the response will be when he finally does preach to Nineveh.

Spiritual Heart Transplant


Part 2
Dr. Victoria Moots


In Ezek. 18:31 God again admonishes Israel to accept His offer of life, “Cast away from you all your transgressions, whereby ye have transgressed; and make you a new heart and a new spirit: for why will ye die, O house of Israel?” The Doctor is telling Israel, “You have a bad heart, and you are going to die; but I’m offering you a new heart. Why will you die? All you need to do is take my new heart.” Likewise, we have the same terminal diagnosis, so why will we die?

Now let us assume that you have been evaluated for a heart transplant and placed on a waiting list. What does it mean to be on a waiting list? It means that you are waiting around for someone who is going to be your donor, that matches you, to die. Think about that! You are waiting for someone to die in order that you may live.

Before you can receive a new heart a donor must die at the right place and the right time. In Gal. 4:4-5 we read that, “when the fullness of time was come, God sent forth his Son made of a woman, made under the law, To redeem them that were under the law.” So, when the fullness of time had come, the exact right time that God had planned, he sent his Son. What was the purpose of sending his Son? To die! For God so loved the world he sent his Son to die for us. II Cor. 6:2 says, “behold, now is the day of salvation.” Now is the time for you to receive your new heart.

The person who is put on a transplant list must carry a pager or a phone and be waiting for the call. When they hear the call that a donor has been found they must be ready to go immediately. They can’t say, “I have something I need to do first; I just can’t come today.” The donor must die at the right time and place that enables the recipient of the heart to reach that location within a very short period of time, who must go immediately or it will be too late for the transplant to be performed. This is also true spiritually; it has to be now. Now is the accepted time. The Holy Spirit calls us not only for salvation, to receive his new heart, but also to be filled with the Spirit and to be his bride. When we hear the call we must go. God had it all planned out, when to send his Son and when to call us. How do we receive the call? Through the Word. We hear his voice and we must be willing and ready to go. Just as Rebecca, we must be willing to say, “Yes I will go.” We can’t wait till tomorrow. He may come today.

Who is capable of being your donor? A donor must match, as closely as possible, the recipient’s size, and must be the right tissue and blood type. It is not possible to take an adult’s heart and transplant it into an infant. Do you understand the correlation? In the natural it must fit and be compatible. Since we cannot change, our donor must match us. We cannot make ourselves match the donor. Jesus had to match us. God’s Son had to be born of a woman, to become like us. He had to come down to earth as a baby; he had to become our tissue type. He was the Son of God, but he had to become the Son of man, to become flesh and blood. God could not put his heart in us; God’s heart would not fit. We cannot be like God. That was one of the lies of Satan in the Garden of Eden. He asked Eve, “what did God say?” She replied that she would die if she ate of or touched that tree. Satan deceived her by saying, “No, you won’t die; you will become like God.”

No, we can’t be like God; we can’t have God’s heart because the donor doesn’t match! He is the wrong tissue type. John 1:1 says, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.” And in v. 14: “the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us.” The Son of God became the Son of man and so the tissue type now matches!

We could not become like God, so he became like us. Jesus said in John 10:11: “I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd giveth his life for the sheep.” The donor had to die to give us life. If we are going to become his sheep, we need a lamb’s heart. It has to be a match; it must be the same tissue type. The Word of God became the Good Shepherd but also the Lamb of God (John 1:29). The Good Shepherd became the Lamb and was slain that we could have his heart.

The blood type also had to match. Jesus had to take on a body of flesh and blood to give us a new heart that was compatible. In Heb. 7:26 we see that he was not only the sacrifice (the Lamb) but he was also our High Priest. “For such a high priest became us.” He became a man, not only to have flesh and blood, but to be touched by the feeling of our infirmities. He became the perfect donor for us. He was now our blood type and tissue type and willingly gave his life for us.

The gift of a transplant should never be taken lightly in the natural or the spiritual for it requires the death of the donor. It is an incredible gift of love and life. We often quote John 3:16 without fully recognizing the value of that life that was given for us and what he went through when he left his throne in glory to become a man, to become like us. He took upon himself the form of sinful man, and he who knew no sin became sin for us. We can’t even begin to comprehend the emotional suffering that he endured in order to give us a new heart. He looked beyond the suffering of the cross to the joy that was set before him.

In Ps. 51:10 David pleaded, “Create in me a clean heart, O God.” A donor heart must be “clean,” free of blocked vessels. In the natural the arteries are examined to be sure they are clean. And the size and weight of the heart is checked to see if it is appropriate and that it is not enlarged, hardened or fibrosed. The heart must be healthy with good blood flow. It is also true in the spiritual. Jesus’ heart was clean and pure; he was without sin. The Lamb of God was without blemish or spot, perfect, with a perfect heart. When we accept this heart, we become a lamb with the Lamb’s heart, a heart that desires to do the Father’s will. This is the same heart that said, “not my will but thine be done” the same heart that cried, “Father forgive them.” It is that kind of love that is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost, because we now have a new, clean heart. We have the free flow of the blood of the Lamb of God in us to manifest the life of Christ. We cannot with the old creation heart have that kind of love. It is only possible with a new heart. Works could not earn a new heart, but after we receive the new heart, we are able to perform work. Our works will then be his works, for it is Christ in us.

So, as God asked Israel, “Why will ye die?” Why not agree with the Great Physician’s diagnosis of heart failure and impending death and submit to the scalpel of God’s Word and receive the gift of life-his new heart? The Donor is waiting; now is the accepted time. The Holy Spirit is calling. Can you hear the call? God has a call on your life. He wants you to have his heart to do his will. Will you say “yes?” And when you awake from surgery after your transplant this will be your testimony: “My heart is fixed, O God, my heart is fixed: I will sing and give praise” (Ps. 57:7).