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MONTHLY STUDY by Ron Martin - For March - "The Blessings of being 'In Christ Jesus" Part 2" Watch for new articles each month!
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Schedule "At a Glance"
3/16 - China Grove, NC & Mooresville, NC
4/5 - 4/6 - Canmer, KY
4/20 - Alexander, NC
The Blessings Of Being “In Christ Jesus”
What great blessings God offers by grace through faith to those who are “in Christ Jesus.” However, the consequences of rejecting the blessings “In Christ Jesus” make us susceptible to evil imagination resulting in the curse of the law of sin and death (Romans 8:2). God told Adam, if you offend me by eating of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, you will surely die (Genesis 2:17). “She (Eve) took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did eat” (Genesis 3:6).
Because all mankind is “in Adam,” we inherit all that is in him. “In Adam” we are dull of hearing God’s immutable truths. We find ourselves employing evil imagination and becoming wise in our own conceit; conceiving truth from our own thoughts (Romans 11:25). God expresses His heart about man, “in Adam.”
“And GOD saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.
“And it repented the LORD that he had made man on the earth, and it grieved him at his heart.
“And the LORD said, I will destroy man whom I have created from the face of the earth; both man, and beast, and the creeping thing, and the fowls of the air; for it repenteth me that I have made them” (Genesis 6:5-7).
“In Christ Jesus” we receive truth from God the Holy Spirit (John 16:7-13). However, “in Adam” we will employ secular humanistic imagination to conceive our own proposed truth. Adam’s sin plunged the human race into judgment and condemnation. God’s judgment was a curse of sin and death to all mankind.
“Wherefore, as by on man (Adam) sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned:” (Romans 5:12). The entire human race is cursed.
“Therefore as by the offence of one judgment (the curse) came upon all men to condemnation; even so by the righteousness of one the free (blessing) gift came upon all men unto justification of life.
“For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous” (Romans 5:18-19).
Because of Adam’s disobedience flesh is under the curse of a sinful human nature. “And unto Adam he said, Because thou hast hearkened unto the voice of thy wife, and has eaten of the tree, of which I commanded thee, saying, Thou shalt not eat of it: cursed is the ground for thy sake; in sorrow shalt thou eat of it all the days of thy life;
“Thorns also and thistles shall it bring forth to thee; and thou shalt eat the herb of the field;
“In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread, till thou return unto the ground; for out of it was thou taken: for dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return” (Genesis 3:17-19).
After God rehearsed 18 times His blessings to Israel, He states, “Now therefore fear the LORD, and serve him in sincerity and in truth: and put away the gods which your fathers (wise in their own conceit) served on the other side of the flood, and in Egypt; and serve ye the LORD (Joshua 24:14). I choose this day to be “In Christ Jesus.” If I choose “in Adam” then sin and death reign over my life and I am under the curse of condemnation. If I choose the blessings “in Christ Jesus” then the free gift of righteousness by grace through faith reigns over my life.
“For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:
“Not of works, lest any man should boast.
“For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them” (Ephesians 2:8-10)!
God said to the children of Israel, “See, I have set before thee this day life and good, and death and evil;
“In that I command thee this day to love the LORD thy God, to walk in his ways, and to keep his commandments and his statutes and his judgments, that thou mayest live and multiply: and the LORD thy God shall “bless” thee in the land whither thou goest to possess it.
“But if thine heart turn away, so that thou wilt not hear, but shalt be drawn away, and worship other gods, and serve them;
“I denounce unto you this day, that ye shall surely perish, and that ye shall not prolong your days upon the land, whither thou passest over Jordan to go to possess it.
“I call heaven and earth to record this day against you, that I have set before you “life and death, blessing and cursing: therefore choose life, that both thou and thy seed may live (Deuteronomy 30:15-19).
“Thus saith the LORD; Cursed be the man that trusteth in man, and maketh flesh his arm, and whose heart departeth from the LORD.
“For he shall be like the heath in the desert, and shall not see when good (blessings) cometh; but shall inhabit the parched places in the wilderness, in a salt land and not inhabited.
“Blessed is the man that trusteth in the LORD, and whose hope the LORD is.
“For he shall be as a tree planted by the waters, and that spreadeth out her roots by the river, and shall not see when heat cometh, but her leaf shall be green; and shall not be careful in the year of drought, neither shall cease from yielding fruit (Jeremiah 17:5-8).
“And I will persecute them with the sword, with the famine, and with the pestilence, and will deliver them to be removed to all the kingdoms of the earth, to be a curse, and an astonishment, and an hissing, and a reproach, among all the nations whither I have driven them:
“Because they have not hearkened to my words; (Jeremiah 29:18-19).
Thank God for the “blessings in Christ Jesus.”
God made a promise to Abraham; “And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee: and in thee (in thy seed; “in Christ Jesus”) shall all families of the earth be blessed (Genesis 12:3).
God’s promises are immutable and unconditional truth. That means no matter whether I accept or reject His promises, they will eternally remain true; “For when God made promise to Abraham, because he could swear by no greater, he sware by himself,
“Saying, Surely blessing I will bless thee, and multiplying I will multiply thee (Hebrews 6:13-14).
“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ” (Ephesians 1:3).
“But now in Christ Jesus ye who sometimes were far off are made nigh by the blood of Christ
“For he is our peace…” (Ephesians 2:13-14).
“For by grace (not justice) are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:
“Not of works, lest any man should boast.
“For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works…” (Ephesians 2:8-10).
If by grace through faith we have been saved and born again, we are “in Christ Jesus” eternally and God the Holy Spirit indwells our spirit eternally. However, God did not annihilate or blot out of existence the nature I received from having been born in Adam. “In Christ Jesus” I received a spiritual nature; In Adam I received a fleshly, sinful human nature. Even though as Christians, we are “in Christ Jesus,” we are tempted by Satan to yield our members as instruments of unrighteousness unto sin (Romans 6:13). Our spiritual nature, freely given to those who yield themselves to the law of the Spirit of life “in Christ Jesus,” is contrary to those who are in bondage to the sinful fleshly nature and the law of sin and death (Romans 8:2).
Thank God, “in Christ Jesus,” we can walk in the Spirit, and not fulfill the lust of the flesh (Galatians 5:16-17).
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GOD BLESS YOU PILGRIMS!! The OLD way is still a GOOD way!
We love you!
Ron Martin, MS, Eds
When we read
the writings of someone, it's vaguely interesting to know something about the
author. Though we may never meet them personally, a brief biography will
help us form a picture of just who is writing this book, song, commentary...
When you are raised to common, every day folks, in a small town in the south, there is not much to intrigue us about the author.
Ron was born in Lafollette, TN in 1942, his father, Bro. Kyle, pastored country churches, his mother Eulalia, was a talented pianist, faithful to the cause of Christ, the daughter of a fine deacon of the church, Walter Goins, and a quiet little mother, Jenny.
The writer of this series, "The Blessings Of Being In Christ", sounds very average, almost quaint. Nothing, however, could be farther from the truth. What makes most men extraordinary is their accomplishments; they have done something unusual, out of the ordinary, makes one intriguing, makes us want to know more about them and encourages us to read what they have to say.
With Ron Martin, just the opposite is true. He is not without credits, he has a fine education from the University of Tennessee; he is in the Basketball Hall of Fame at Lincoln Memorial University; he was a successful basketball coach and a dedicated educator for thirty years. These credentials are not spine-tingling, but admirable.
What makes Ron worthy of your time is not his accomplishments, but what God has accomplished in him! If you had known this man as a boy and young adult, known him even up to his mid-thirties, your opinion would be one of hopelessness for even a reasonable expectation of him becoming a great man of God.
God, omnipotent, Holy, Divine Deliverer, Rescuer of the hopeless; The God of sufficient grace and plenteous mercy accomplished the impossible in a man who, by all outward signs, was hopeless.
He was a rebel, inherently rebellious. Loving sin, loving his own will and way, became a servant... a slave and prisoner of Jesus Christ.
He could not have just suddenly rescued himself, just, on a whim, decided to dedicate himself to God, to offer himself sacrificially to no other purpose but "knowing Christ." Not only knowing His name, but knowing Him as the Apostle Paul did.
"But what things were gain to me, those I counted loss for Christ.
"Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord" (Philippians 3:7-8).
Something had to foster this change in a man committed to rebellion and self-will. God did it all! But what moved His hand to do so was a father who wouldn't give up on his son, and a mother who labored on her knees, tirelessly and tenaciously.
When God came to her, and through the Holy Ghost, spoke these words, "I am going to use your boy," her prayers for Ron's deliverance turned to unwavering faith - "God will use my boy." He was only fifteen years old when that promise came, and for the next twenty years it was, to her, an immutable Truth. And so it was.
A student of God's Word, untiring in his pursuit, "That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death" (Philippians 3:10). Ron's commentaries shine a brilliant light on what it means to be a child of God, a prisoner of Christ.
Visit www.kylarowland.com OR contact our office for more information on this NEW dvd release!
It is no ordinary evening: Kyla, two extraordinary musicians, the Holy Spirit....and you!
Kyla Rowland welcomes you into her secret world of writing as she performs some of her most memorable and beloved songs... Songs you have known and sung for the past four decades.With the great Tim Parton's thrilling piano talent and the beautiful guitar sounds of Jeremy Medkiff, you are drawn into the life of one of Southern Gospel's most annointed songsmiths.
As you listen to the stories behind these songs, you laugh, you cry and worship, until you find that the Holy Spirit has transported you into Heavenly places. Finally, Kyla is joined by her daughter, Allyson, and son, Barry, of Barry Rowland & Deliverance.This is no ordinary evening... With no ordinary songwriter: Our Heavenly Father is glorified and His Son is lifted up, made evident by the power of the Holy Ghost!